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Opinion: In search of a striker, Preston North End should turn to 21-year-old League One attacker

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Preston are a side that could undergo some big squad changes when the January transfer window opens.

With new boss Ryan Lowe eager to implement his own style and philosophy on the team, there will likely be some players that are sold off and others that are brought in to help him achieve it.

Once the manager knows what parts of the team he likes and those he doesn’t, he can get to work in shaping the squad to his liking – and one area that he is likely to target come the winter window is upfront.

Preston are a side with a few striking options currently but, apart from Emil Riis, there are few who bag goals on a regular basis. Sean Maguire has been superb alongside Riis so far this season in assisting him and putting in the work but he hasn’t been able to bag frequently.

Quiz: Have Preston North End signed a player from each of these 20 clubs in the last 5 seasons?

1 of 20

1. Barnsley

Ched Evans has been sidelined through injury and while he has contributed over the last few weeks, he is getting on in his career with a resale value that could be very little. If he also gets injured again, it would leave them short upfront.

Ryan Lowe and Preston then could perhaps benefit from some more options in that position. They do have Tom Barkhuizen, Scott Sinclair and even Josh Murphy who can fill in there but they are more naturally wingers and would prefer to line up there.

One player that Lowe could potentially consider bringing in come the winter window then is Luke Jephcott.

The 21-year-old has shone under Lowe at Plymouth and could continue a similar trajectory in the Championship with the Lilywhites. The boss certainly knows how to get the best out of the Welshman and if the player can trust anyone to get the most out of him and utilise his ability to the best it possibly can, it’s Lowe.

There are a few questions to be asked about whether he could compete in the Championship, given that at times he has faltered with the pace and keeping in games at third tier level. However, his goal rate speaks for itself though and Lowe knows how to get the youngster firing.

He has played a key part for Plymouth in recent seasons but if the Deepdale outfit make a decent offer for Jephcott, then there is a chance that they could be willing to let him leave. They still have solid options in their own strikeforce and could replace him and that also means a deal is possible.

With Jephcott, the player is still young and has the potential to be a decent option in the Championship. If Lowe signs him and then the player cannot recreate his goalscoring feats of a league lower, then they could easily find a buyer for him in the future. If the player thrives though, they would have a strong forward line and could do a deal for relatively cheap.

If the manager does raid his old side for the player then, it could be a good bit of business by PNE.


Writer for Football League World.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Opinion: In search of a striker, Preston North End should turn to 21-year-old League One attacker

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