Exclusive Sean Gregan PNE column
The script was written for Jordan Hugill to score Preston's goal against Ipswich wasn't it?
After two bids from the Tractor Boys for him were turned down by PNE, there was a sense of inevitability that he would find the net.
North End have done the right thing in rejecting the offers.
With the transfer market being as it is, I don’t think £2m would be anywhere near enough for a striker who is scoring goals in the Championship. Yes, the market is bloated at the moment and you do frown at some of the prices being paid.
But North End can only demand the going rate – why let someone go on the cheap?
Hugill would be best served staying at Deepdale and working with a manager who is clearly coaxing the best out of him.
Would Ipswich be a bit of a sideways move? It would be, in my opinion.
If Hugill keeps on working and improving at North End, who knows where that might take him? I have said it before in this column that I like the look of the lad and what he offers to the team.
He is only three or four years into his professional career and has the potential to push on.
Eight goals in the league this season and another in the League Cup, is decent going, especially when you bear in mind he wasn’t a starter in the first few weeks of the season.
Looking at North End’s draw with Ipswich, before the game you would have looked at it as being one which PNE had a good chance of winning.
It didn’t turn out that way but with the equaliser only coming very late, it will be a point they are pleased with.
The boot was on the other foot last month when they conceded a late equaliser against Sheffield Wednesday so you could say this draw balanced it out.
Simon Grayson pointed out before and after the game that you will never get an easy ride against a side with Mick McCarthy in charge.
You can say the same about every club at this level, all points you get have to be earned.
It will be the same against Cardiff on Tuesday night with Neil Warnock in charge.
It was interesting to see that Jermaine Beckford has come on as a substitute in North End’s last two games following the completion of his suspension.
Hopefully the lad has got himself focused on football after those two red cards which made the headlines for all the wrong reasons.
I’ve got to admit that I was somewhat surprised by what happened.
I was at Leeds with Becks and then played in games against him, and he didn’t strike me as someone with a short fuse – he was always about scoring goals.
If North End can get him back scoring goals, whether that be from the bench or starting games, Beckford can still be a big player for them in these next few months,