Loan man Reach is finding best form

Adam Reach
Adam Reach
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Simon Grayson believes Preston North End are starting to see the best of Adam Reach.

The 22-year-old winger is a month into a 93-day loan from Middlesbrough and has played five times for PNE.

In the last two matches at Charlton and Brighton, Reach has operated at left wing-back in a 3-5-2 system.

While that gave him extra defensive responsibility, he caught the eye in both games going forward.

Lilywhites manager Grayson told the Evening Post: “Adam is finding his feet here.

“He had not played too much football this season for Middlesbrough ahead of joining us.

“Adam is now feeling comfortable with us and we want him to play to his strengths – getting at the opposition full-back and taking people on.

“He has been doing that as well as the defensive side of his game.

“We are very satisfied with how Adam is doing and we look forward to him doing that in the weeks to come.

“At Charlton he played a big part in the win, being positive and driving forward to win the free-kick from which we took the lead.

“In the wing-back role, he’s contributed to two clean sheets which is another positive.”

North End signed Reach on an emergency loan ahead of the 1-1 draw with Wolves on September 26.

Wolves had also expressed an interest in signing him but Grayson got his signature.

Reach has provided some much-needed width to the side and has the energy to get up and down the pitch in the wing-back role.

His use as a wing-back has been because of injuries in the centre of PNE’s defence.

Greg Cunningham and Calum Woods have moved into the centre of defence to cover the losses of Tom Clarke and Paddy McCarthy.

Paul Huntington has only been available as a substitute in the last two games as he is eased back into action after hamstring trouble.

Huntington is approaching full fitness now, having played 20 minutes against Charlton and the closing stages at Brighton.

If he is available to start, it would provide Grayson with the option of starting with a flat back four.

A knock-on effect from the arrival of Reach was the temporary exit of Kyel Reid from Deepdale.

Reid joined his former club Bradford on loan at the start of October and his stay at Valley Parade is to be extended.

An agreement is in place for the Bantams to keep hold of the winger until January.

During his loan spell, 27-year-old Reid has started four games, those resulting in three wins and a draw.

He is enjoying his time back in West Yorkshire, the loan enabling him to get regular first-team action, something he wasn’t getting at PNE.

Said Reid: “I’m just happy to be playing and getting some games under my belt and it’s great that the team are doing well.”