Preston North End still have more business to do in the January transfer window after signing Connor Ripley

New Preston North End goalkeeper Connor Ripley
New Preston North End goalkeeper Connor Ripley

Preston North End have more business to do in the transfer window yet after landing a fourth January signing in goalkeeper Connor Ripley.

The Lilywhites completed the purchase of Ripley from Middlesbrough last night for an undisclosed fee.

Connor Ripley at Deepdale after signing for Preston

Connor Ripley at Deepdale after signing for Preston

Boro recalled him from a loan spell at Accrington so they could do the deal.

Ripley, 25, follows Jayden Stockley, Josh Ginnelly and Brad Potts into the Deepdale arrivals lounge.

North End boss Alex Neil is pleased with the incoming deals done to date and the club have other targets.

Neil said: “I always like to think that we are trying to be active in the window.

“If we can get players in who can help to improve us, we will do.

“We shop in a selective market so I don’t think we are ever going to be the type who say ‘That is us done, we can’t do anymore’.

“The market we shop in is always open for business shall we say.”

Ripley’s arrival will see him compete with Declan Rudd for the keeper’s jersey.

He has signed a three-and-a-half year contract and goes straight into Neil’s squad for Saturday’s Championship clash with Swansea City.

The move to Preston will see him able to put down some football roots after spending a lot of time out on loan from Middlesbrough.

Ripley – the son of former Blackburn and Boro winger Stuart Ripley – has more than 150 first-team games under his belt in England, Scotland and Sweden.

He made 36 appearances for Motherwell in the 2015/16 campaign – Louis Moult one his team-mates at Fir Park.

The year before, Ripley spent time with Swedish side Ostersunds.

After Motherwell he had a season with Oldham, making 54 appearances.

He had spells with Burton and Bury, then at the start of this season joined Accrington on loan.

Ripley played 24 times for Stanley, the last of those being Saturday’s FA Cup victory over Ipswich Town.

On completing his move, Ripley told Preston’s official website: “It is a step up for me, but I think I am ready to play in the Championship.

“Young goalkeepers need to go out and play as many games as possible and I have played more than 150 games, so I am not inexperienced.

“I have gone and done that dirty work.

“I have to had to drop down the leagues, I have even gone to Sweden, so I wasn’t scared to find games in other places.

“All that work has paid off and now I am at a great club like Preston North End.”

On the transfer front, PNE are reportedly on the trail of Accrington right-back Callum Johnson.