Danny beyond PNE’s budget

Danny Graham tussles with PNE skipper Tom Clarke at Ewood Park
Danny Graham tussles with PNE skipper Tom Clarke at Ewood Park
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Reported Preston North End target Danny Graham is likely to prove to be out of reach for the Lilywhites this summer.

The 30-year-old striker was linked with a move to PNE in the national media this week.

While he is a player who North End have an interest in, his wages are far beyond the Deepdale pay scale.

Graham is out of contract at Sunderland next month and set to be available to move on a Bosman.

He spent the second half of the season just finished on loan at Blackburn.

In 18 starts with Rovers – one of those being April’s 2-1 defeat to PNE at Ewood Park – Graham netted seven goals.

The Gateshead-born front man is already believed to have offers from clubs who will pay near to the wages he is on at Sunderland.

Celtic and Rangers have been strongly linked, while there is also interest from the Championship.

Graham started his career with Middlesbrough and had a succession of loan spells while coming through the ranks.

One of the loans came with Carlisle United, where he was a team-mate of Joe Garner.

In July 2009, Graham joined Watford on a free transfer.

Two years later, he moved to Swansea for £3.5m, then a £5m switch took him to Sunderland in January 2013.

During Graham’s time at Sunderland, he has had loan spells at Hull, Middlesbrough, Wolves and latterly Blackburn.

North End have made no secret of the fact that they want more firepower next season.

They are targeting two strikers in the summer to compete with Garner, Jermaine Beckford and Jordan Hugill.

Goals were hard to come by for Simon Grayson’s men last term – they scored 45 in 46 league games.

Another striker to be linked with Preston is Walsall’s Tom Bradshaw.

Reports that PNE have recently tabled a £400,000 offer for the Wales international are wide of the mark, according to club sources.

They are believed to have made a general enquiry but not put in a bid.

North End had a strong interest in Bradshaw during the January window.

But with the Saddlers well placed for a promotion push at the time, they would not part with the striker.

Bradshaw netted 20 goals last term – 17 in League One and three in the FA Cup.

Eoin Doyle remains on the radar after spending the majority of last season on loan with North End from Cardiff.

Although the Irishman only scored four goals, there is a belief that he can be developed at this level.

Doyle is now back with parent club Cardiff and any potential deal would have to see a big drop in the asking price by the Bluebirds.

They paid Chesterfield in the region of £800,000 for him in January 2015 and would like to recoup as much of that as possible.

PNE would not go anywhere near that figure, as they have a budget to adhere to.