Preston North End on the look out for a winger after Darnell Fisher and Ben Pearson exit Deepdale

Preston North End waved goodbye to Darnell Fisher and Ben Pearson yesterday as their focus sharpened on bringing additional attacking quality to Deepdale in the remaining days of the transfer window.

By Dave Seddon
Saturday, 30th January 2021, 8:00 am

Right-back Fisher joined Middlesbrough and Pearson went to AFC Bournemouth, both on permanent deals.

North End will be reunited with both players fairly soon, Pearson when he comes to Deepdale with the Cherries on March 6, then with Fisher when they make the visit to Teesside on March 15.

Replacing Fisher will be done in-house for now, with skipper Alan Browne having played at right-back for the last two games.

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Darnell Fisher has left Preston to join Middlesbrough

Joe Rafferty is the other option, with PNE set to look longer-term in the summer for a replacement.

They had already brought in Ben Whiteman and Jayson Molumby in anticipation of Pearson leaving.

In terms of the remaining incoming business, a winger tops the priority list.

North End have been linked with Everton’s Anthony Gordon on loan.

North End have sold Ben Pearson to AFC Bournemouth

If it was Gordon, 19, they landed, or another target from the Premier League, it would take them up to their limit of five loan players.

Molumby, Daniel Iversen, Greg Cunningham and Ched Evans have been signed on loan, with Ben Whiteman the one permanent buy.

As well as a winger, PNE sources say there is the possibility of another deal but that is described as being a ‘long shot’ at this stage.

There’s no further word on Ben Davies’ future, the defender having been in talks with Celtic over a pre-contract agreement.

Everton's Anthony Gordon has been linked with a loan move to Preston

Davies travelled with the PNE squad to South Yorkshire yesterday afternoon ahead of today’s Championship clash with Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough (3pm).

With regards Pearson and Fisher, both were in the last few months of their contracts at Deepdale.

However, Fisher hadn’t been offered a new deal but Pearson had – the midfielder turning it down and opting for a new challenge.

Both moves went through quite quickly once fees had been agreed – both of which carry the usual ‘undisclosed’ tag as per EFL rules.

Pearson’s fee includes additional payments linked to appearances.

Manchester United will get a slice of the fee having put in a sell-on clause when they sold him to PNE in January 2016.

He’s signed a three-and-a-half year contract at the Vitality Stadium.

The fee for Fisher is believed to be around the £300,000 mark.

He was the first signing made by North End after Alex Neil’s appointment as manager in July 2017.

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