Ex-Preston North End and Rangers star igniting club's promotion hopes after January move

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A former Preston North End striker has made it his quest to get his new side back in to the Football League.

Former Preston North End favourite Joe Garner has had a fantastic start to life at Oldham Athletic - as he tries to get the club back in the Football League.

The 35-year-old dropped out of the Football League for the first time in his career, to spearhead the Latics' promotion push after leaving Carlisle United in January. He signed an 18-month deal at Boundary Park and so far it looks to be a good piece of business for both parties.

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He has four goals in six games for Oldham, which has resulted in three wins, two draws and a defeat. Oldham, managed by Micky Mellon, are currently sixth in the league standings and on course for a play-off spot.

When he joined Oldham in January, Garner said: "The way the manager spoke about the team and club, how huge it is, was a major part in me coming here, in addition to already knowing Muzza [Paul Murray]. I just want to get started, helping the team get more wins and hopefully get us out of this league."

Garner was a hugely popular figure during his time at Deepdale - where he spent four-and-a-half seasons. He netted 57 goals in 151 games and scored 25 times in the 2014/15 campaign - in which PNE won promotion from League One via the play-offs.

His time at North End came to an end in August 2016, when he was signed by Rangers for a reported £1.8million. Garner spent one season at Ibrox, before being sold to Ipswich Town. He would spend only one season at Portman Road too, before spells at Wigan Athletic and Cypriot side APOEL.

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Garner then returned to England, following a six-month stint in Cyprus, to reunite with former Lilywhites boss Simon Grayson. The striker spent two seasons at Highbury Stadium, before dropping down a division to Carlisle. He won promotion via the play-offs for the second time in his career with the Cumbrians and despite playing half a season in the third tier, he moved down the pyramid to help Oldham's cause.

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