Preston will need a clear out of some of their unwanted players this month but one name that many expected to be sold on this month is now likely to be kept, as reported by the Lancashire Evening Post.
That name is Connor Ripley, the goalkeeper who has failed to make much of an impact at Deepdale since signing for the team back in 2019.
The 28-year-old made the move to PNE from Middlesbrough and despite many feeling he would prove to be adequate cover or perhaps even play regularly, he has done neither.
Instead, he has been limited to just ten games, with most of that action coming in the cup. Most recently, the shot-stopper was sent out on loan to Salford, where he fared a lot better.
Quiz: Can you name which club Preston North End sold these 26 players to?
Appearing nine times for the side, he put in some solid showings and was a lot brighter than he has been previously at Deepdale.
With PNE not having many plans for him – Daniel Iversen, Declan Rudd and perhaps even Matthew Hudson are seemingly above him in the pecking order – it looked likely he would be sold on or at least loaned out again this month.
However, a report from the Lancashire Evening Post claims that Ripley will instead be kept on at Deepdale until the end of the season.
His current contract with the club is set to run out at the end of the campaign and while he is not likely to sign a new one, he could at least be used as cover in the goalkeeping department and that is seemingly the plan for him with the Lilywhites.
Rather than being able to look for pastures new then this month, it appears as though he could now become the backup to Daniel Iversen for the remainder of the campaign.
It’s probably a smart move from Preston to keep Ripley on this month, especially with them lacking options beyond Daniel Iversen in goal right now.
The goalkeeper would be one of the names you would expect to be shown the exit door at Deepdale during this window, especially with his contract up soon. However, with Declan Rudd sidelined, it looks like he may be the preferred option as a backup instead of Hudson.
That surely throws Hudson’s future into doubt too, as if Ripley is valued higher than him, then surely he should be sent out either on loan or in a permanent deal? Either way, it looks as though Ryan Lowe is quite happy to let Ripley see his contract out and use him if needed for the remainder of the season.
If he does get on the field, then it could be a chance for him to showcase his talents to any potential suitors in summer. After his showings for Salford, there is surely going to be some interest in his services at least in the next transfer window.