PNE star Gally to become a record breaker

Paul Gallagher
Paul Gallagher
  • Loan star set for 100th appearance for PNE against Peterborough
  • Gallagher is first borrowed player to reach three figures at an English club
  • Posh arrive at Deepdale having won their last four games
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Hired help Paul Gallagher is set to write his name into the record books in Preston’s clash with Peterborough tonight.

The Deepdale contest will be Gallagher’s 100th game for PNE, his ton spread over three loan spells.

We are fortunate that we have got someone like Gally on our books

In doing so he will become the first player to make a century of loan appearances for an English club.

Gallagher’s first loan spell came in the 2007/08 campaign when he was on Blackburn Rovers’ books.

The Lilywhites brought him back in October 2013, this time from Leicester City.

And they struck a deal last summer with the Foxes for him to spend the whole of the current campaign here.

The 30-year-old has been a key cog in the works, starting all but one of PNE’s league games this term.

North End manager Simon Grayson said: “It is great from our perspective to have Gally.

“The only way we could get him to the club last year and this year is on loan because we certainly cannot afford the wages he is on at Leicester.

“We are grateful to them for letting him come here and it was good that he chose to come here, even though he had offers from the Championship last summer.

“Hopefully it is only another 11 games on loan this season and we will take it from there.

“One-hundred games is a lot of football for someone to have played away from their parent club.

“But I don’t think it makes too much difference when it comes to how your career goes.

“It is about looking back and having 400, 500, 600 games under your belt at good clubs and what you have achieved.

“We are fortunate that we have got someone like Gally on our books.

“Hopefully he will keep contributing to a successful team.”

Grayson has used the loan system extensively over the last couple of seasons.

Sam Johnstone, Callum Robinson, Jermaine Beckford and Gallagher are the four on loan at present.

Said Grayson: “I do like to utilise the loan market in terms of the window-to-window one where you know players can’t get recalled for a certain period of time.

“We have also used the emergency loan market when we’ve had to.

“There is a possibility that the emergency loan system could eventually finish. If it is still in place next year we will continue to use it.”

This evening’s game will see a resurgent Posh side paying a visit, the London Road outfit having won their last four.

PNE are in a tidy spell of form themselves, with seven wins and a draw collected from the last eight matches – a run which Grayson is keen to emphasise.

“This will be a tough game against a side who have given themselves a real chance of getting back into the play-off positions,” said Grayson.

“We go to Barnsley and then play Fleetwood, all teams in and around the play-offs.

“They will be tough games but the opposition will be aware of how well we have been playing too.

“The nature of this division is telling us that there is always something resting on a game.

“Teams are desperate to get in the top six and, at the other end of the table, things have got tighter.

“I don’t think there is a team in this league, maybe with the odd exception, who doesn’t have anything to play for with 10 or 11 games to go.

“At this stage of the season that is quite rare.”

Meanwhile, PNE winger Lee Holmes has joined Exeter City on an emergency loan for the rest of the season.

The 27-year-old has been out of favour at Deepdale this season, making just one substitute appearance.