Preston are hoping to fix goalkeeper Michael Crowe with a loan move in the January transfer window

Preston North End's Michael Crowe may go out on loan
Preston North End's Michael Crowe may go out on loan

Preston manager Alex Neil says a loan spell for Michael Crowe would be ideal for the goalkeeper.

Crowe, 23, has played just once for PNE since signing on a Bosman in the summer after leaving Ipswich.

That appearance came in the FA Cup against Doncaster a fortnight ago and wasn’t the happiest for him.

Neil has four keepers in his squad in Declan Rudd, Connor Ripley, Mathew Hudson and Crowe.

In addition, Chris Maxwell has been loaned to Charlton Athletic for the remainder of the season.

Hudson recently returned from being on loan at Bury, one intended to provide him with a run of first-team games.

But the 20-year-old played only four times, all of those in the Checkatrade Trophy.

Neil said: “We would like to potentially put someone out on loan.

“The difficulty we have got is getting clubs for them.

“Goalkeepers don’t often move in January.

“If it happens we need to find the right place.

“Look at Mathew Hudson, it was good that he went on loan to Bury in the summer.

“But he didn’t play enough and I don’t want a keeper to go somewhere and not play.

“If we could get Michael Crowe out on loan to get him some games, that would be perfect for him.

“However, I need to make sure he is playing, if he is not there is no point.”

Meanwhile, Neil intends to ease Josh Ginnelly into action following his New Year’s Day arrival from Walsall.

The winger didn’t make the matchday squad for last week’s 1-1 draw with Swansea.

Neil sees Ginnelly, 21, as a ‘project’ and believes he has the raw materials which can be developed.

“What we must remember with Josh is that he came through Burnley’s Under-23s, dropped down to the National League for a bit and then went to Walsall for half a season,” said Neil.

“He is more of a project at the moment and we’re hoping he will hit the ground running as quickly as possible so that we can get him involved.

“It is important that we don’t demand too much too soon from some lads.

“Josh is not quite ready yet but the raw materials are there to work with.

“He played in a bounce game on Tuesday and we saw how he can drift past players at ease at times.

“Josh just needs to get a bit of a better understanding of the game in terms of what we are looking for.”

Several other first-team players featured in the bounce game against Salford.

Neil said: “It was good that the lads who haven’t been playing got some minutes in their legs. It will have kept them sharp.”