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Preston pull off coup with Gallagher addition

A promotion push is certainly still on the cards for Preston this season, and adding Paul Gallagher will help their bid to get out of League One

Preston are still enjoying a great start to the season under Simon Grayson. Fourth in the table with just two defeats to their name so far, they have established a strong platform for the rest of the season.

But in the midst of their victories, there is still an issue over creativity. The introduction of youngster Josh Brownhill has provided a spark in midfield, but when centre back Tom Clarke is your top scorer, you know there is a problem.

As a result, Grayson has moved to bring a former Deepdale loanee back to the club, with Leicester's Paul Gallagher returning having had a six month loan spell with Preston in 2007. Gallagher has a lot of fans to win over though, as the 29 year old was somewhat disappointing during that spell.

Just one goal in his six months at Deepdale was the product of a lazy attitude – and an infuriating tendency to try and curl every single shot into the corner – and many fans are sceptical about bringing him back to the club after such a lacklustre spell.

However, Gallagher has enjoyed a fruitful period with Leicester City, scoring double figures in consecutive seasons from the flanks, and has still shown the ability to be a clever player who can create chances for others, and, according to Grayson, turned down four Championship clubs in order to come back to Preston.

His ability on the ball will offer something different to what Preston already have, and Gallagher is a threat from set pieces and shooting from range, whilst he offers versatility in that he can play out wide, as a frontman or just behind the strikers – something that Grayson rated highly.

'We felt that we wanted to improve the squad and looked at certain positions and areas of the pitch that we could strengthen and Paul is obviously an experienced Championship player, played in the Premiership and can play in a variety of positions,' Grayson told the club's official website.

It remains to be seen whether Grayson will move to alter the 3-4-1-2 formation after Gallagher's arrival, but Preston now have an abundance of attacking players, with Stuart Beavon, Iain Hume, Kevin Davies, Joe Garner and Lee Holmes all vying for places in the starting line-up.

Adding Gallagher is a clear signal of intent that Preston are ready to break free from the shackles and attack teams more, and with some of the firepower mentioned, few teams in League One will be able to cope with the quality Preston have up front – when firing on all cylinders.

image: © twicepix

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