North End are planning to keep hold of Hugill
Preston have the option of keeping hold of Jordan Hugill until the end of his contract, even though they would miss out on a big profit on him.
In August they rejected an £8m offer from Reading for the striker, having thrown out bids from Birmingham and Wolves earlier in the transfer window.
Ipswich had two bids turned down in January.
After the bid from Reading, Hugill handed in a transfer request, which was turned down by PNE.
The frontman seems to have put the events of the window behind him, hitting some good form of late.
Hugill has scored in three games on the bounce against Sunderland, Fulham and Wolves, taking his season’s tally to seven.
Speaking at a fans’ forum at Deepdale on Monday night, Peter Ridsdale addressed the position with Hugill.
Ridsdale – advisor to North End owner Trevor Hemmings – said: “The reality of football is that every player at every club is for sale.
“It depends on the price and the ability of the club to replace that player.
“In August we were very lucky when the owner said that if we couldn’t replace Jordan satisfactorily, he was prepared not to take £8m.
“When we get to January, the first question is whether we have found a replacement and the second is will anyone come in for Jordan?
“He has 18 months left on his contract, we paid £25,000 to Port Vale for him.
“We are looking at the £25,000 and not the £8m.
“We want to get promoted to the Premier League and you only get to the Premier League by keeping your best players.
“The owner has said that if we wish to keep Jordan until the end of his contract in 2019, we can do.”
The future for Hugill was one of a number of topics discussed at the forum which was attended by 200 fans.
Chief executive John Kay said the club’s latest financial figures are due to be filed soon and will show Hemmings had put £5m into PNE in the last financial year and a further £5m investment would be needed this time.
Season ticket sales were at a 10-year high, with 8,254 sold in the summer.
Kay said plans are in place to put a fanzone underneath the Alan Kelly Town End, with that likely to open next season.
Ridsdale and Preston boss Alex Neil both said they would like to stick to shopping in the British market rather than go abroad.