PNE boss won’t be rushed into signings

Sam Johnstone is on North End's radar
Sam Johnstone is on North End's radar
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Simon Grayson is content to take a patient approach when it comes to bolstering Preston North End’s squad ready for the Championship.

The Lilywhites boss has his summer transfer targets and will wait for them, rather than rush and bring in others just for the sake of speed.

Ideally, he would like the majority of the squad in place by the start of pre-season training on July 2.

However, if it means waiting that little bit longer to get certain players in, Grayson will do so.

Having released six players and seen two more turn down contract offers and leave, there are gaps to fill.

For Grayson, it is all about finding the right quality rather than dashing into deals. He told the Evening Post: “We will be moving a lot closer to one or two things in the next few days.

“Every football fan up and down the country gets a bit frustrated at this time of year.

“They ask why their club aren’t signing this player or that player.

“We have got to be sensible in our approach, not rush in to get the first player who becomes available.

“In an ideal world I would love to have everyone here for when we come back for pre-season training on July 2.

“That might not be the case with everyone we are after – sometimes you have to wait that bit longer for someone you really want.

“We have got bids in for players and we might have to wait for their clubs to get replacements in before we can move forwards.

“Look, I could go out and sign a host of players now – I could have had the whole squad ready three weeks ago.

“But I’m waiting for the right people who I think will make us better as a squad, not just signing players for the sake of it.”

The exits of Scott Laird and Thorsten Stuckmann last week will mean Grayson having to do more business than perhaps he envisaged.

Said Grayson: “As a club I don’t think we could have done anymore in trying to retain Scott and Thorsten.

“They have their reasons for going and leave with my very best wishes.

“Both were fantastic lads to work with, not just as players but as people in general.

“Does it alter our work? It might be that we need to get another goalkeeper in as well as trying to bring Sam Johnstone back.

“Left-back was a position we were working on anyway, with David Buchanan going.”