Dave Seddon’s PNE press view

Strikers Stevie May and Eoin Doyle joined Preston North End on a  busy transfer deadline day
Strikers Stevie May and Eoin Doyle joined Preston North End on a busy transfer deadline day
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Football had its few days locked in the padded cell of insanity as transfer deadline day came and went this week.

Late deals, rushed deals, missing paperwork, distraught Spanish goalkeepers, sulking strikers – we saw the lot.

The window is never going to go away but with each crazy deadline that passes, it underlines the need for a few tweaks and more sense.

There are growing calls for the window to shut before the season starts.

I can see the sense in that because August, for a number of Premier League clubs and indeed some below, has merely become an extension of pre-season.

Many squads are not being completed until the run-up to the deadline, key deals very often last-minute jobs.

Some players clearly tread water for those opening three or four games, knowing that their next move could well be on the horizon.

The deadline being when it is might suit Spain and Italy where the season starts later but it is two or three weeks too late here.

It does not matter when a deadline is, there will always be the delay and panic.

But it makes sense to wrap things up into one – the close of the window and the start of the season coinciding.

A record amount of cash was spent by English clubs in the window just shut.

Had West Bromwich and Everton not dug their heels in over Saido Berahino and John Stones respectively, that figure would have gone up significantly.

One deal, for me, stood out this week, providing a modicum of sensibility to proceedings.

Javier Hernandez moved from Manchester United to Bayern Leverkusen for £7.3m.

A proven Premier League striker, a Mexico international to boot and someone who managed a few goals during a loan spell with Read Madrid.

To move for £7.3m when clubs were offering £12m for Championship strikers, seems something of a snip.

There was certainly a fair few quid spent by clubs who see themselves being involved in the race to be promoted from the Championship.

Reaching the Premier League, has and always will, be the Holy Grail, but getting there next May will see the three promoted clubs get their share of the new TV deal.

The same reward will be there the year after and the year after that, however some clubs have got in the mindset that it is win or bust this season.

On a slightly different scale, Preston did deadline business of their own, with the Stevie May and Eoin Doyle deals.

With both strikers, it was a case of re-visiting former targets and finally getting their man – or men in this case.

Simon Grayson is not without options up front now and it will be interesting to see how he utilises May, Doyle, Joe Garner, Will Keane and Jordan Hugill.

More rotation will be on the cards I imagine, there being less of a need to flog any of them to the point of standstill.

May, Doyle and Garner are all strikers who like to play up against the last defender.

Keane can drop off to play deeper or wider, with Hugill the most physical of the five.

Once Jermaine Beckford comes back after knee surgery, it will be a case of trying to keep six strikers happy!

The need for another striker was underlined at Hull.

North End had plenty of the ball and edged possession over their hosts but only twice went close to scoring.

Hull’s central defenders isolated Garner, with the gap too great between him and the supporting midfielders.

So what of May and Doyle? Neither were a million miles away from being PNE players in the past.

Managers tend to keep past targets in mind and Grayson clearly thinks they can do a job. Both have something to prove, having not particularly set the Championship alive last season – May with Sheffield Wednesday and Doyle after his switch to Cardiff.

However, they knew where the net was previously at a lower level and Grayson has ‘previous’ with bringing the best out of strikers.

Remember, he inherited a non-scoring Garner and eventually got him going.

Beckford too, the striker arriving on loan short of goals and a bit low on confidence.

I stand by my view that at this stage, the window just shut was a decent one for PNE.

Nine players left – not all of them close to the first-team – and nine have come in.

All the new arrivals will be in first-team contention and have upped the standard.

Being picky, there is scope for another defender and a midfielder – the loan market and January window offer that opportunity.