Preston North End boss makes revealing admission over Newcastle United transfer target also wanted by Birmingham and Sheffield Wednesday

Newcastle United midfielder Isaac HaydenNewcastle United midfielder Isaac Hayden
Newcastle United midfielder Isaac Hayden | Getty Images
PNE have been linked with a move for the Newcastle United midfielder

Preston North End manager Ryan Lowe believes Newcastle United midfielder Isaac Hayden would be keen on a move to Deepdale.

The 28-year-old is reportedly in talks with PNE over a loan deal, having returned from a frustrating spell at Standard Liege in the first half of the season. Hayden is down the pecking order at parent club Newcastle, with boss Eddie Howe expecting him to go back out on loan.

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Birmingham City, Sheffield Wednesday and Blackburn Rovers have also been credited with interest in Hayden, but recent claims in the media have suggested that Preston are at the front of the queue. Outgoings will dictate PNE's transfer business this month, but Lowe did not play down the links to the Magpies midfielder by any means.

"As Peter said, we are not in talks with anyone," said Lowe. "But, the recruitment team will be in talks with everyone and speaking to a lot of people. What you've got to do in this business is make sure you have got things lined up. Isaac Hayden is a fantastic footballer. He hasn't played as many games as he would've liked.

"I think the connection; I know his agent very well and we speak all the time about players. I am sure he would come and play for us if the opportunity was there. I am sure I'd love to have him if the opportunity was there. Who wouldn't? Because there are probably another ten (clubs) out there. But, as Peter has said, unless anyone goes out there probably won't be anyone coming in."

Lowe mentioned the need to have 'things lined up' - which would imply Preston are planning in case any current players depart. Ben Whiteman is one key midfielder in the final six months of his deal, while club captain Alan Browne is also out of contract in the summer. PNE director Peter Ridsdale is hopeful of retaining both, but back-up plans are clearly on the go.

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"Yeah, the recruitment lads will have a list of players in all different positions," said Lowe. "Whether there are small fees, loan fees or permanents; people who could potentially be getting paid up. It is their job to find all of that out and speak to the agents. I don't do all of that; James Wallace does all that and finds out who is available.

"Andy will then have all the data and numbers on them, for if ready. We know what type of player we would need if that was the case, because you've just got to expect the unexpected haven't you? You just never know who is going to come in for someone or whether someone is going to walk away or go out on loan. We've just got to make sure we have the bases filled, which we've always had and will continue to have."

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