Dave Seddon's Pressview
Even Sky Sports News had waved the white flag in terms of trying to hype up the final stages of deadline day.
Sky might have well folded up the yellow ties and put them back in the top drawer at lunchtime, accepting the fact that the run-up to 11pm would be flogging a dead horse.
No matter how much spin was put on Stoke breaking their transfer record, Guardiola going to Eastlands was the headline story.
Much earlier in the day, before a word had been written on Pep’s big move from Munich to Manchester, the window had been slammed shut on the prospect of any late deals at Preston.
Simon Grayson announced during his 9.15am meeting with the local media that North End’s business had been done.
Hence the next few hours were spent writing previews of the visit to Derby rather than leaving space for news of any impending arrivals.
There had been an anticipation among supporters that a new striker could arrive, Grayson having spoken during the window of the need to add to the forward line.
So news that the shutters had come down was not exactly greeted with delight.
No one disputes the need for more firepower, Grayson and those above him would have loved to have landed a striker.
But it all boiled down to what was available and in this case, what was not available.
It is no secret that their main target was Tom Bradshaw at Walsall, a lad with 34 goals to his name over the last 18 months.
However, he was simply not available in the window just shut and will be wearing Saddlers colours this weekend.
Second in League One and in with a great chance of promotion, who could blame Walsall for slapping a ‘not for sale’ sign on their main man?
Or indeed, the player himself wanting to stay put to see the job through.
Ask yourself this, would Preston have sold a fully-fit Joe Garner part-way through last season’s promotion push?
Looking at business done elsewhere, there were very few moves for strikers to Championship clubs which caught my eye.
Nothing really jumped out to get me thinking ‘he would do a job at Deepdale’.
Forget Jordan Rhodes going from Blackburn to Middlesbrough, we are talking about a different planet there as far as finances are concerned.
MK Dons brought in Alex Revell and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas.
But have either of them cut the mustard at Cardiff or Queens Park Rangers?
Even if PNE had somehow managed to land Bradshaw, you are still talking about an unproven player at Championship level.
A year ago, Eoin Doyle was all the rage in League One and attracting attention from the second tier – Cardiff going on to sign him.
Now here at Preston on loan, the Irish striker is finding form hard to come by.
The January window is a difficult one, it being very much for patching-up squads and giving some an extra kick, rather than for re-building.
It might be that North End’s hand is forced in terms of recruiting a striker during the forthcoming loan window.
Suspension, injury or a continued shortage of goals could see the case argued for some emergency 93-day dealing.
Now that Premier League 25-man squads have been re-submitted, an avenue or two for temporary recruitment could open up.
Going back to deadline day, I am glad that North End, having been unable to land their main target, did not go scrambling around for just anyone.
On Monday night, I likened on Twitter the last hours of the window to the ‘10-to-2’ routine in Squires on a Saturday night back in the day.
I won’t elaborate further but judging by the responses I got, plenty of Preston folk of a certain era knew what I was eluding to!
Touching briefly on the 0-0 draw at Derby on Tuesday night, it seems a handful of Rams fans took umbrage on social media to the tactics employed by PNE.
Okay, a solid defensive line and system was never going to produce a classic.
But what should North End have done, laid down and let Derby waltz through them?
Maybe those having a moan should look closer to home at their huge earners who could not muster a chance on target?