Preston North End's loan players will be in the spotlight in the crucial last eight matches

Points are the name of the game for Preston North End over the next five weeks but as the games are ticked off the countdown starts to decisions being made about certain players in the squad.

Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 12:37 pm
Updated Wednesday, 31st March 2021, 12:38 pm

The Lilywhites have five loanees in the squad who they will need to take a longer-term view of.

A handful of players are also out of contract in the summer, not to mention a dozen or more 12 months later.

PNE used the loan market extensively in January, seven players initially arriving at Deepdale as borrowed help.

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Anthony Gordon in action for Preston North End against Bournemouth

Jayson Molumby, Daniel Iversen Liam Lindsay, Sepp van den Berg, Anthony Gordon, Greg Cunningham and Ched Evans came on loan.

Cunningham and Evans subsequently turned their loans into permanent deals until the end of the season.

Of the five on loan, keeper Iversen has been the big hit with a string of impressive displays between the posts.

The Dane was signed from Leicester City as a stand-in for the injured Declan Rudd rather than in a squad-strengthening move.

Sepp van den Berg is on loan at PNE from Liverpool

With the way Iversen has performed, though, North End will surely be looking into the idea of extending his stay to compete with Rudd.

Molumby, the first of the loan arrivals, has been rather hit-and-miss in terms of being in the team.

He has started eight of the 16 games PNE have played since signing from Brighton, of late mainly having to make do with a place on the bench.

Molumby will re-join the squad on Thursday after being with the Republic of Ireland during the international break.

PNE goalkeeper Daniel Iversen is on loan from Leicester City

Van den Berg has nailed-down the right-back berth, starting the last seven games.

The Dutch teenager came to Deepdale as part of the package which took Ben Davies to Liverpool.

He has only played once in his usual centre-half position, on his debut as a substitute against Rotherham.

North End do have first refusal to take van den Berg on loan next season as long as he has been playing regularly this campaign - which in the main he has.

Gordon was another young player who Preston shopped in Merseyside for, securing him from Everton.

Five starts and four sub appearances paint a picture of the 20-year-old winger being in and out of the side.

He has the potential to change a game with his talent and more trust needs to be shown in him, something he might get from Frankie McAvoy.

Centre-back Lindsay came back into the side recently after hamstring trouble.

With another year left on his Stoke contract, he could be quite expensive to get out of Stoke longer term and it might be that North End have to look at other options for the summer to strengthen the back four.

Lindsay won't be able to face his parent club when PNE make the trip to the Potteries in April.

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