Further transfer business to be done as Preston North End return to training

Preston North End’s focus will be on both the arrivals lounge and exit door in the coming few weeks as the first-team squad is fine-tuned.

By Dave Seddon
Friday, 2nd July 2021, 8:00 am

Four summer signings started pre-season training with the Lilywhites at Euxton yesterday – a double session their welcome to the club.

Matthew Olosunde met his PNE team-mates for the first time after signing on a Bosman on Wednesday night.

The American right-back joined Izzy Brown, Sepp van den Berg and Liam Lindsay in the ‘new boys’ camp – Van den Berg and Lindsay returning after loan spells last season.

Preston North End’s new signing Matthew Olosunde (photo: PNE FC)

Josh Harrop, Adam O’Reilly, Ethan Walker and Jack Baxter were back from being out on loan.

Second-year scholar Lewis Leigh – who was on the bench for the away game at Millwall in March – together with new first-years scholars Noah Mawene and Josh Seary joined in with the senior squad.

There was the welcome sight too of Patrick Bauer back with the squad after seven months on the sidelines with a ruptured Achilles tendon.

Alan Browne will be in the gym for the first few days of pre-season as he is eased back after resting an injury during the break.

He had been carrying the injury last season and did not go on international duty in the summer in order to help the issue settle down.

North End have further incoming business to do, with a striker high priority.

They are prepared to wait until later in pre-season to boost their attack.

At the other end of the pitch, Daniel Iversen’s loan from Leicester will go through closer to the start of the season.

Work is being done in terms of cutting the numbers in the squad.

Goalkeeper Connor Ripley has attracted some interest, with a season’s loan a possibility.

Harrop, too, might find his future is elsewhere.

North End head coach Frankie McAvoy is delighted to have landed Olosunde, a player he thinks has got the talent to develop further.

The 23-year-old came as a free agent having turned down the offer of a new contract at Rotherham.

That offer from the Millers was for less money than his previous contract, hence they were not entitled to youth compensation for Olosunde.

McAvoy said: “He’s a player that we’ve had an eye on for a while to be honest.

“He’s got great energy and athleticism to get up and down the right-hand side. He can play as a right full-back or-wing back. He’s had one cap already for the United States.

“ Hopefully he can find a home here and start to do well, kick on and he’ll be looking to get back into the United States set-up.”