A number of clubs continue to monitor Jordan Hugill’s situation despite Preston North End insisting their star striker will not be sold before the end of the transfer window.
The Lilywhites’ No.9 handed in a written transfer request on Tuesday morning which was swiftly rejected by the Deepdale hierarchy.
It came on the back of PNE turning down an £8m bid from Reading for his services on Friday.
North End made their position clear in a statement issued yesterday afternoon.
“Preston North End can confirm that Jordan Hugill has today handed in a written transfer request,” it read.
“The club have rejected this request and will not be selling him in this transfer window.”
Preston are desperate to keep hold of their prize asset who, despite all the speculation surrounding his future, has led the line impressively as Alex Neil’s side have made a promising start to the season.
After 13 goals last season, the 25-year-old already has three to his name this time around, two in the League Cup defeat to Accrington and the winner against Reading.
North End have taken the decision to battle hard to keep one of their key men believing he will still give his all for the Whites should he be a Preston player at 11pm on Thursday.
It remains to be seen whether Reading will return with a second, improved bid for Hugill, who is contracted with PNE until the summer of 2019.
Birmingham had two much lower bids rejected earlier in the window, while Wolves have always retained an interest.
Sources in the North East also indicate Simon Grayson and Sunderland would be interested in taking the striker to the Stadium of Light.
They first need to offload some big earners, however, to raise the necessary cash to make a move and that will be far from straight between now and Thursday night’s deadline.
PNE want the only departures from Deepdale to be those fringe players who have n0t been involved in the opening weeks of the season, Eoin Doyle having attracted interest from Plymouth and Wigan.
On the incoming front, North End continue to work on one or two additions, with deals likely to happen nearer to the end of the window.
Yesterday Preston were linked with a move for Bristol Rovers’ Billy Bodin who has scored five goals in six appearances so far this season.
Given his fine form, the 25-year-old midfielder or forward is on PNE’s radar but is not believed to be near the top of their shortlist and no enquiry has been made.