Why Steven Gerrard chose Preston North End as the loan destination for Aston Villa starlet Cameron Archer

Ryan Lowe says the style of football he is getting Preston North End to play was a big factor in landing Cameron Archer from Aston Villa.
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Archer joined PNE on loan for the rest of the campaign yesterday and there will be a quick return to the Midlands for the striker with him in the squad for tomorrow’s visit to West Bromwich Albion.

Lowe’s friendship with his Villa counterpart Steven Gerrard helped the deal along, the pair good pals from their younger days in Liverpool.

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However, the North End manager says his approach to the game was important in Villa’s decision as to where to send the 20-year-old on loan.

Preston North End’s new loan signing Cameron Archer (photo: PNE)Preston North End’s new loan signing Cameron Archer (photo: PNE)
Preston North End’s new loan signing Cameron Archer (photo: PNE)

Lowe told the Lancashire Post: “In terms of Aston Villa letting him go, it was the right thing to send him on loan but it had to be to the right club.

“They wouldn’t have wanted him going to a team where he isn’t going to see much of the ball and not get chances to score.

“If my style was a bit different, Stevie Gerrard wouldn’t just send him to me because he is my friend.

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“He’s sending him to us because of our style and the way we play.

“The friendship obviously helped but if it was long balls here and chasing channels, nine times out of 10 he wouldn’t have sent him.

“Stevie has chosen for Cameron to come to us and more importantly, Cameron has chosen to come to us.”

Archer came through the Villa academy and grew up as a fan of the club.

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He made his Villa debut in a Carabao Cup tie in 2019 and had a couple of games in the EFL Trophy that year.

Last season was spent on loan at Solihull Moors in the National League.

It is this current campaign when Archer has kicked on in his career.

In August he scored a hat-trick in Villa’s 6-1 win at Barrow in the Carabao Cup.

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Archer scored in the next round against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, a tie which was settled on penalties.

His Premier League debut came in Villa’s 1-0 win over Manchester United at Old Trafford in September.

He has appeared twice more in the top flight since then and been on the bench.

But Villa have now decided the time is right for him to get a regular run of first-team football and he will attempt to get that at PNE.

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Said Lowe: “It is tough to get good, young Premier League players.

“Gone are the days when someone just gives you a player on loan and says, ‘Coach him and work with him’.

“They are big assets , they are valuable assets.

“With Cameron’s situation there were plenty of teams who wanted him.”

Archer will wear the No.21 shirt at PNE.