Reach out to prove a point at PNE

Adam Reach goes past Scott Arfield in PNE's victory at Burnley
Adam Reach goes past Scott Arfield in PNE's victory at Burnley
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Preston North End winger Adam Reach could rightly be looked upon as a lucky omen for both the Lilywhites and his parent club Middlesbrough.

The 22-year-old has played 17 games this season, finishing on the losing side just twice.

Six games with Boro at the start of the campaign saw him taste victory in four of them and draw two.

Since switching to North End on loan in September, he has been an ever-present in the starting XI.

His 11 matches in a Preston shirt have resulted in three wins, six draws and two losses.

The balance provided by Reach on the left-hand side of the pitch has helped the Lilywhites settle into the Championship.

While his first three games were as an out-and-out winger, over the last few weeks he has operated at left wing-back in a 3-5-2 system.

His adapting that role has allowed Greg Cunningham to move inside to be part of a three-man central defence.

PNE have had preliminary talks with Boro about a possible extension to his loan.

But it is likely to be January until they get a definite answer.

North End manager Simon Grayson said: “We have had a little bit of dialogue with Middlesbrough to see what they are thinking of doing with Adam.

“I think it’s probably a little too early for clubs who are loaning their players out to commit to what they are going to do.

“There is always a lot of dialogue between clubs about certain players whether it’s loan deals or permanent deals.

“A lot of that information will not become public until January.”

It was something of a surprise that Reach was loaned by promotion-hunting Boro in September. He played 46 games for them last season and started this term in the first team – in fact he started against PNE at Deepdale on the opening weekend of the campaign.

This is his fourth loan spell away from Boro – he previously played for Darlington, Shrewsbury and Bradford City.

When coming through the ranks at the Riverside Stadium, Reach played for England at Under-19s and Under-20s level.

However, an Under-21s cap was to evade him and he is beyond that age group now.

In the Under-20s, Reach could list Harry Kane, Ross Barkley and John Stones among his team-mates. They played together at the Under-20s World Cup in Egypt in 2013.

Reach said: “We got knocked out in group stages.

“It was my first experience of playing in an international tournament, so it was an amazing experience.

“I played for both England Under-19s and the Under-20s. I am too old now for the Under-21s and I never got the chance to play for them.

“Harry Kane, Ross Barkley and John Stones were all players I played alongside for England in Turkey.

“There were a lot of players in that squad who are now playing week in, week out, in the Premier League.

“I am looking at them and thinking at one time I was in the same team as them.

“Hopefully I can do what they’ve done in the Premier League – I am always striving to be a better player.”

Reach will be back in action on Saturday when North End host managerless Reading at Deepdale.