PNE in Numbers: Hugill's rise a big plus this season
It's fair to say that Jordan Hugill has been one the real success stories for Preston North End this season.
In a way, the wholehearted front man epitomises Simon Grayson’s time at Deepdale.
The 24-year-old is a rough diamond, not the most fashionable of strikers, who is developing all the time.
Having been a late-comer to the professional game after time in non-league, Hugill has certainly made the most of his opportunity this season.
Handed the striking responsibilities the former Port Vale man leads the way with 11 goals this season, form that saw him attract a £2 million bid from Ipswich in the January transfer window.
His game is so much more than the goals though and seven bookings across the campaign show that Hugill is a striker who isn’t afraid to use his physical presence.
For a player who many thought would be on the fringes, 40 appearances isn’t bad going at all, the front man playing a total of 2,184 minutes over the campaign.
At a time when Aiden McGeady, Daryl Horgan and Tom Barkhuizen are grabbing headlines for PNE’s sizzling attacking play, it is easy to forget how reliable Hugill has been.
He has formed partnerships with both Barkhuizen and previously Callum Robinson, being the mainstay around which the rest of the North End attack can work.
The best thing for Preston is along with many others in this emerging squad, given Hugill is relatively new to full-time football he is only going to get better.