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Ryan Lowe speaks out on potential return to Preston North End squad for 28-year-old

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Preston have their annual ‘Gentry Day’ this weekend against Barnsley and regardless of whether it has much impact on the Championship table or not, the Lilywhites will be determined to pick up the win.

One boost for the side then after a disappointing 4-1 defeat to Blackburn in midweek, is that Tom Barkhuizen could potentially be back in the mix for the game.

Speaking on the club’s official Twitter account, boss Ryan Lowe admitted that he could go with the side for their fixture against the Tykes if he is fit enough.

The 28-year-old will no doubt be desperate to get back into the action too, especially with his contract set to run out at the end of the campaign. He’s been a first-team regular at Deepdale for six seasons now and has played in just under 200 league games for PNE during his time there.

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Graham Alexander

However, this year he has been much more limited in terms of the appearances he has made. Picking up a number of knocks and injuries has meant he’s played in just 13 league games this campaign, with ten starts and no goals.

The last of his appearances came in January, and this is his worst output since moving to Preston and is the lowest number of games he has played in for North End.

In a contract year, that isn’t good news for the forward. However, having featured for the club’s reserve side in midweek, there is a chance he could be back in time to at least play some part in either the fixture against Barnsley this weekend or in the last game of the season.

Speaking about the player to the club’s official Twitter account, boss Ryan Lowe said: “He got 45 minutes on Tuesday, so we will see how he is today to see if he’s fit and available to come with us, we don’t want to rush him back too soon though with just two games to go.”

The Verdict

For PNE fans, it would be good to see Tom Barkhuizen get a run out at some point in the last two games of the season, especially if it could be a last hurrah for the player at Deepdale before leaving the side.

The signs are that he won’t be tied down to new terms with the Lilywhites considering how little he has played this year and how frequently he has found himself sidelined.

That isn’t to say that he is a bad player – 33 goals and 18 assists during his time at Preston suggests a player with plenty of skill and output – but more that he is no longer a first-team feature.

Other players have stepped in and impressed more during his absence and Ryan Lowe has also altered the system in a way that may not benefit the 28-year-old. He’s a winger at heart and there is no room for wingers in his new formation.

Barkhuizen then could be set for pastures new this summer – but he could at least get a goodbye to Preston fans before he does leave the club.


Writer for Football League World.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Ryan Lowe speaks out on potential return to Preston North End squad for 28-year-old

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