Adam still within PNE’s Reach

Former PNE loan star Adam Reach's future is still to be decided
Former PNE loan star Adam Reach's future is still to be decided
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Preston North End are still very much in the hunt to bring Middlesbrough winger Adam Reach back to the club – either on loan or permanently.

The 23-year-old former England youth international spent the vast majority of last season on loan at Deepdale.

He arrived at the end of September and went on to score four goals in 35 appearances – playing a pivotal role as North End secured a top-half finish in their first season back in the Championship.

It was his versatility which particularly stood out as PNE boss Simon Grayson utilised him in a wide variety of positions, particularly down the left-hand side.

Primarily a player with attacking intent, Reach showed that he was just as comfortable in a left wing-back role.

Arguably his finest performances in a Lilywhites shirt came when he was deployed ‘in the hole’ just behind a lone striker.

Indeed his goalscoring display in one particular match against Wolverhampton Wanderers at Molineux led team-mate Paul Gallagher to liken him to Real Madrid and Wales superstar Gareth Bale.

Whether Reach returns or not is subject to his parent club Middlesbrough.

He is still under contract at the Riverside and his return would depend on whether Boro manager Aitor Karanka sees him as part of his plans for the forthcoming season.

Having been deemed surplus to requirements last season by Karanka in the Championship, that would suggest his future lies elsewhere – especially after the Teessiders won promotion to the Premier League. However, it is understood Reach is still highly regarded by the 
North East club and it is thought the player himself would like to have a crack at proving himself in the top flight.

As well as Reach, North End are still hopeful of enticing goalkeeper Anders Lindegaard back to Deepdale to battle for the No.1 jersey with new recruit Chris Maxwell, who signed last month from Fleetwood Town.

The Danish shot-stopper spent the final three months of last season at the club after signing on loan from West Bromwich Albion.

Whether Lindegaard signs a permanent deal or not would depend on reaching an agreement with the Baggies over the final year of his contract, although there is a possibility he could be available on loan again.

It is understood that out of all the players to represent North End on loan last season, they are the only two players that PNE retain a significant interest in.

Whether Reach does re-sign or not, it is known Grayson is keen to significantly bolster his attacking options next season.

Having captured 6ft 7in targetman Simon Makienok from Italian club Palermo this week, the North End boss is keen to bring in a further striker and possibly two wingers.

Names such as Walsall’s Tom Brashaw and Southampton’s Lloyd Isgrove are thought to be on PNE’s radar.

Grayson is also interested in bringing in a defender.