Preston striker Ched Evans reported to be on Wigan’s January wanted list

Preston North End have dampened speculating linking striker Ched Evans with a January loan move to Wigan Athletic.

By Dave Seddon
Monday, 20th December 2021, 7:54 am
Updated Monday, 20th December 2021, 11:25 am

A report in the Sun newspaper yesterday claimed that Wigan were eyeing Evans to help their promotion push from League One.

But as things stand, it would be a surprise to see the Welshman let go.

North End sources say the impact Evans made on his return to the side recently shows what he can bring to the team.

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Preston North End's Ched Evans has been linked with a move to Wigan

Having missed a chunk of the season with a foot injury, he came off the bench to score in successive games against Middlesbrough and Fulham.

He then started the derby defeat at Blackburn but missed Ryan Lowe’s first game in charge against Barnsley due to illness.

Evans was back in training last week and is believed to have impressed Lowe.

He is different to what North End have got in the striker department, physical, able to hold the ball up and bring others into the game.

PNE already have Tom Bayliss loaned out to Wigan for the season.

Even though Wigan make a contribution to the midfielder’s wages, would North End be minded be send a second player on loan there?

Evans signed for PNE from Fleetwood Town last January, initially on loan.

That move was made permanenent in February as they reduced the number of loan players they had.

In April, Evans signed a new two-year contract which runs until June 2023.

The Wigan link might be a case of agents doing their work ahead of the January window, testing the water and the market.

What is not in doubt is that next month, North End do have some pruning to do with the squad numbers.

They are carrying a big squad, with Jamie Thomas, Josh Harrop and Connor Ripley not registered for league games because of the 25-man limit.

Connor Wickham and Izzy Brown also aren’t registered due to injury.

Wickham was registered in the autumn but then taken off the squad list after needing hanstring surgery.

That saw Joe Rafferty take his place in the 25.

Wickham has resumed full training recently but the deal he signed in Setpember only runs until mid-January,.

Summer signing Brown, who ruptured his Achilles tendon during pre-season training, is a long-term casualty.

PNE were back in training today after the postponement of the Millwall game gave them a free weekend. Daily Covid testing of players at EFL clubs has now started following the long list of postponements.

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