Preston North End manager Alex Neil has suggested that the Lilywhites are looking to address the contract situations of Paul Gallagher and Tom Clarke so they can complete the campaign with the Lilywhites, and then they will assess their long-term futures later.
The Lilywhites have so far only extended the contract of goalkeeper Declan Rudd out of the players whose contracts are set to come to an end, and Gallagher and Clarke are two of Preston’s most influential senior players who have yet to have their contract situation solved.
Neil will be needing to have as many of his key first team players available to him as possible ahead of the potential resumption of the Championship campaign, with Preston looking to secure their place in the play-off places as they look to secure promotion to the Premier League.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Neil suggested that Preston are aiming to extend the contracts of both Gallagher and Clarke ahead of the season resuming, and that the club will then look at whether to offer them longer term deals when the campaign has got up and running again.
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He said: “I would imagine our lads will extend their contracts to the remainder of the season.
“Then when, or if we start playing again there will probably be discussions at that point to see whether it’s going to be extended beyond that.
“We have spoken to Paul and Tom in particular because they’re two senior players and they’ve been great servants to Preston, so discussions with them have been ongoing.”
These are very challenging times for clubs up and down the EFL, and there will be many clubs in Preston’s position where they are quickly looking to extend the deals of their out of contact players to see them through to the potential ending of the campaign.
Both Gallagher and Clarke are important players around the dressing room for the Lilywhites, and it will be vital that the club manage to extend their deals until at least the end of the current campaign, if they are going to have enough strength in depth to seal their play-off place.
The two players will probably feel they have done enough to earn longer term extensions, like Rudd, but they will have to wait until there is more clarity over the club’s financial situation, which will likely become more evident when the season does get back underway.