PNE boss says Hugill has put transfer talk behind him

Alex Neil says Jordan Hugill is focused on the job in hand at Preston North End after the intense speculation about his future during the transfer window.

Wednesday, 6th September 2017, 1:32 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 12:48 pm
Preston striker Jordan Hugill

The striker was subject of an £8m bid from Reading and handed in a transfer request two days before the deadline.

Birmingham and Wolves were also interested, with him certainly a man in demand.

PNE manager Neil had been consistent throughout the saga about his determination to keep Hugill.

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Jordan Hugill flies through the air in PNE's game at Middlesbrough

“It wasn’t anything like ‘thank God the window has shut’ because from the get-go we had been consistent about it,” said Neil.

“Jordan and his agent and everyone connected with it was told in no uncertain terms that he is our player and we wanted to keep him.

“We were fine with that.

“Jordan has trained really well, he is focused and ready to go.”

Jordan Hugill flies through the air in PNE's game at Middlesbrough

Neil does not foresee any problems with regards Hugill’s attitude in light of the events of recent weeks.

The 25-year-old front man has netted three goals this term and is set to face Barnsley on Saturday.

“There won’t be any problems,” said Neil.

“The fact is when someone comes along and promises you the riches of the world, you are going to get your head turned.

“That is what happened with the lad, it is only natural.

“The good thing is he is focused on what he has to do here, he wants to improve and wants to do well.

“We will benefit from that, so that is great.”

Hugill, a £25,000 signing from Port Vale in 2014, is under contract at Deepdale until June 2019 and there is the offer of fresh terms on the table.

The interest in him goes back to January when Ipswich had two bids rejected.

Wolves enquired about him soon after the end of last season, with Birmingham making two offers over the summer.

Reading came in with their offer in the latter stages of the window.