Preston North End ready to do more shopping abroad confirms boss Alex Neil

Preston could well do more business abroad due to the cost of buying in the domestic market.

By Dave Seddon
Thursday, 22nd October 2020, 12:30 pm

The Lilywhites made Emil Riis their one signing of the summer/autumn transfer window, paying Danish club Randers FC £1.2m for him

Alex Neil had urged North End to ‘broaden their horizons’ in the transfer market so that they could shop within their budget.

So securing Riis could well signal more foreign deals in the future.

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Alex Neil on the touchline on Sunday during the 1-0 home defeat by Cardiff City

PNE boss Neil said: “The biggest difficulty we have got is that when anyone in this country shows potential and could come to the Championship, there will be four or five clubs after them.

“Then it boils down to who the highest bidder is.

“Unfortunately for us that makes it really difficult to win the race – there will be teams with more resources which gives them more money.

“That is why we need to go abroad.”

PNE’s head of recruitment Joe Savage is the main point of contact for scouting players.

Neil said: “Mainly Joe leads up the scouting of players in terms of looking abroad, looking at players and making contact with agents.

“In terms of players being highlighted, it will involve agents filtering them in or Joe and his team of scouts will have been looking.”

Neil admitted the transfer window, the domestic part of which closed last Friday, had been frustrating.

Although it took until early October to do business with the capture of Riis, it did not mean PNE were not busy up until then.

Said Neil: “If I could show everyone what we were doing, who we targeted, how it went, who we spoke to, everyone would go, ‘Yes, I understand’.

“But you only see the end result and people think, ‘What the hell have you been doing for the last six, eight, 12 months’?

“I can assure you it was difficult, you feel as if you are getting somewhere and then that door shuts.

“So you move on to the next one and then the next one.

“That is why as a manager, unless you have an endless pot of cash, the transfer window is the scourge of your life.

“There might be more joy going to the continent because not everyone’s web spreads that far.

“It might be that you can find someone, get a gem.

“You look at Emil, he will be fine here. He is 6ft-plus, he can run, has a rocket in both feet.

“Technically we have got a bit of work to do with him and we haven’t seen the full package yet. Over time he will be a very good player.”

Meanwhile, North End’s clash with Millwall at Deepdale next Wednesday will kick-off at the slightly earlier time of 7pm.