Doncaster Rovers captain Ben Whiteman is interested in securing a move to Championship side Preston North End, according to LancsLive.
After a promising start to the season as an individual, including netting five goals and four assists, Whiteman has attracted a number of suitors from England’s second tier, including West London side Queens Park Rangers.
But it is North End who may have the advantage in the race for Donny’s number eight, and that’s not just due to the location of the Lilywhites, who aren’t based too far from Whiteman’s hometown of Rochdale in Greater Manchester.
Per LancsLive, Whiteman’s interest in a move to Deepdale is thought to be because of the size of the club and that they are also financially stable, with owner Trevor Hemmings offsetting any losses on a monthly basis.
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Whiteman is a former Manchester United academy player and he could be replacing another one if he joins Alex Neil’s side in the form of Ben Pearson.
Whilst Pearson ended up winning the prestigious Young Player of the Year award at United in 2013, Whiteman was released at the age of 16 and made his way to Sheffield United, but joined Doncaster in 2018 after a successful loan spell.
He’s come on leaps and bounds at the Keepmoat Stadium, and under Darren Moore has become the focal point of their engine room, usually playing as the holding midfielder but he’s more than capable of being used as a box to box outlet.
If North End want Whiteman, they’re probably going to have to table more than the £1.3 million that was rejected when Barnsley tried to snag Whiteman from their Yorkshire rivals in the summer.
The money is there to spend for the Lilywhites if it’s given to Neil by Hemmings, but depending on the stance the club hold over soon-to-be out of contract players like Pearson, Daniel Johnson and Ben Davies, a sale or two amongst those names could fund a deal for Whiteman itself.
If Whiteman is the heir apparent to Pearson, then he’s got massive boots to fill as he’s a huge crowd favourite, but North End will now have to act on Whiteman’s supposed interest and perhaps push the boat out if they really want their man.