Preston North End negotiating a professional contract with midfielder who is interesting Everton and Arsenal

Preston North End are in talks with young midfielder Lewis Leigh about a professional contract.

Sunday, 1st August 2021, 7:56 am

The 17-year-old is a second year scholar at PNE and has played a prominent role in the pre-season friendlies.

In the last few days he has found himself linked with interest from the Premier League - Everton Arsenal, Leicester and West Ham all claimed to be tracking him.

He has a year left on his North End scholarship with the option of another year after that.

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Preston North End midfielder Lewis Leigh

But North End are keen to get him signed up to a professional deal and have been in talks with his representative.

Leigh, who hails from Preston and went to Ashton High School, joined PNE's academy in the Under-14s age group after a spell at Liverpool.

He made the bench once for the first-team last season, that at Millwall in March.

During pre-season Leigh has featured against Bamber Bridge, St Johnstone, Bolton, Accrington and Wigan - he was an unused sub against Celtic and Manchester City.

At Wigan on Friday night, he came on as a 61st minute substitute for Alan Browne who is coming back after hip surgery in the summer.

PNE skipper Browne is one of those who has been impressed by Leigh over the course of pre-season.

Browne told the Lancashire Post: "Lewis reminds me a bit of Ledo (Ryan Ledson).

"He is lively, always looking to get on the ball and he's done fantastically well in pre-season. For a kid of that age he has handled himself really well, he looks the part.

"I think going forward he has a bright future.

"Lewis has come out of nowhere and surprised a few of us.

"He has kept going in training and doesn't look out of place. For someone of that age, it is quite rare."

Leigh has been given the No.17 squad number for the 2021/22 season.

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