Boss Alex Neil insists Preston have no need to sell Jordan Hugill

Share this article

Alex Neil insists Preston North End are in a position of strength amid continuing speculation surrounding star striker Jordan Hugill.

The 25-year-old was reportedly the subject of a rebuffed £8 million bid from Reading ahead of the 0-0 draw at Middlesbrough on Saturday.

Jordan Hugill.

Jordan Hugill.

Royals boss Jaap Stam indicated after his side’s win at Birmingham that they had now moved onto other targets while Wolves, another club linked with a move for the powerful front man, are understood to be doing likewise.

Birmingham have also seen two bids knocked back in this transfer window while Ipswich also showed an interest back in January.

After an encouraging first month of the season concluded with the goalless draw at the Riverside Stadium Neil, who didn’t comment on whether Reading had made a bid or not, maintained that despite the offers going up, North End had no need to sell.

“I wouldn’t say keeping our players is the biggest thing this window,” the Preston boss said.

“They’re our players and we don’t need to sell them.

“It’s not as if anybody’s got a gun to our head and we need to get rid of them.

“We want to go and try and achieve something this season so you need to keep your best players.

“If you sell your best players it becomes more difficult. It’s common sense.”

Neil is instead focusing on supplementing what he’s already got with a new face or two.

No deals are understood to be imminent with work continuing in the run up to Thursday night’s 11pm deadline.

Two signings have arrived since Neil took charge, Rotherham full back Darnell Fisher and Arsenal loanee Stephy Mavididi, taking the number of new arrivals to six this transfer window.

“I’d like to think we could bring players in but as always it’s not easy,” said the PNE boss.

“We’re doing our best behind the scenes.

“Hopefully we maybe get one, potentially two, across the line by the time the window finishes.”

Any potential new recruits are likely to be impressed with a return of eight points from five games against some of the top sides in the division.

It could have been even more had North End taken what would have been a deserved victory on Teeside.

“I think we’ve had a great start,” Neil said.

“The only frustration is that we didn’t get three points that we deserved on Saturday.

“I think if anybody looked at our games and said we’d have got as many points as we’ve got at the moment having played as well as we have then I think most people would have taken it.”