Preston North End skipper Tom Clarke is leaving Deepdale but Paul Gallagher has agreed to extend his stay

Tom Clarke is leaving Preston North End after seven years at Deepdale.

Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 8:05 pm
Updated Tuesday, 23rd June 2020, 8:08 pm
Preston's Tom Clarke scores against Blackpool at Deepdale in August 2013

The club captain, who is out of contract next week, has decided not to take up the offer of a short-term deal to cover the remainder of the season.

Clarke has made 237 appearances for North End since arriving on a Bosman in the summer of 2013.

He announced himself in style as a PNE player, heading the winning goal against Blackpool in the League Cup at Deepdale in August 2013 - that only his second game for the club.

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PNE skipper Tom Clarke

The defender has worn the skipper's armband for much of his time with Preston and was captain when they won the League One play-off final at Wembley in 2015.

Appearances have been thinner on the ground over the last year or so due to injury.

This season 32-year-old Clarke has started seven Championship games and come off the bench three times. He also played once in the League Cup.

He's been troubled on and off by a knee injury since last season and wasn't fit for last Saturday's restart game at Luton Town.

Paul Gallagher takes a free-kick in PNE's 1-1 draw at Luton

While Clarke is heading out of Deepdale, his team-mate Paul Gallagher is staying.

Gallagher, who is also due out of contract next week, has agreed a deal to remain for the rest of the season.

Negotiations will then take place in the summer about extending his stay for longer.

The 35-year-old started the Luton game - his 27th Championship appearance of the campaign - so it is not too much of a surprise to see him stay..

EFL clubs had to submit their retained lists today, hence this being the deadline for contract extensions to be agreed.

North End have announced that Jack Armer, Michael Crowe, Kevin O'Connor and Connor Simpson have been released having reached the end of their contracts.

They had not been required to return to training in May as the club started their build-up to the restart.

Ethan Walker is the only one of the second scholars to have joined the professional ranks, having signed a pro contract during the season.

The remainder of the second years have been released.