Tunnicliffe, who was signed for Fulham by Rene Meulensteen, made two Premier League appearances under the Dutch manager before his sacking. When current manager Felix Magath was appointed, Tunnicliffe was sent to Wigan as cover for the injured Ben Watson, as Magath imprinted his imposing style upon the inherited squad.
The 21 year-old - who spent the first half of the season at Ipswich Town - has made just five Championship appearances for Wigan, with Uwe Rosler reportedly frustrated by his attitude in training. Tunnicliffe's final game for the Latics came against Bolton Wanderers, in which he was substituted after failing to impress. His anger at the decision resulted in a show of petulance, and Rosler has not selected the midfielder in the three games since.
On contacting Fulham to cancel the deal, Wigan were told that he is not wanted back at Craven Cottage, and Magath has reportedly told Tunnicliffe that he will not be playing for Fulham next season.
The German coach previously hinted at both Tunnicliffe and fellow loanee Larnell Cole - who also joined Fulham under Meulensteen, only to be farmed out 25 days later - having futures at the club. Following an assessment of his inherited squad, the German announced:
"Yes, sure. After the season it’s a new situation. They are very talented, but now is the time we need players that are experienced and make less faults. A young player has to make faults to develop.”
Whilst these words suggest a belief in Tunnicliffe's ability, the rumours of his petulance at Wigan may have caused a rethink by Magath, who's strict regime is at odds with a rebellious character.
If Tunnicliffe does leave, it will have been a quick decline for the youngster, who was on the books of Manchester United less than three months ago.