Preston's Earl Signs on Loan
Monday, 13th Jan 2020 11:17
Town have confirmed the signing of Preston defender Josh Earl on loan for the rest of the season.
News of the Blues’ interest in the 21-year-old broke yesterday with Town understood to have fought off interest from Rotherham and the Chicago Fire to recruit Earl.
The new signing, a left-back or centre-half, looks to have come into the squad as a replacement for Toto Nsiala, who joined Bolton on loan on Friday, but could also allow Luke Garbutt to push forward into midfield if the Blues revert to a four-man backline at some point.
"The move came around quite quickly, I got told on the Friday that I was possibly moving down to Ipswich on Sunday and I’m here now and can’t wait to get started," Earl told the club site.
"I watched the game back and the lads played really well on Saturday, so hopefully we can carry that form into tomorrow’s match at Oxford.
"I feel as though it’s a great squad and the only aim for everyone this season is to push for the top two."
He added: “As soon as I heard Ipswich wanted me that was it. They are pushing for the automatic promotion places and it looks an exciting club to be part of so it was an easy decision.
“There are good players here and the target is obviously to get back in the Championship.
"It’s a challenge I want to be part of, an exciting challenge and that was key to me really. It’s a great move for me.
“The games come thick and fast and I’m here to play my part. It’s up to me to get a place in the team and hold on to the shirt.”
Southport-born Earl, who has been handed the number three shirt by Town, came through the youth system at Preston, where he is contracted to 2021, and has made 31 senior starts and six sub appearances for the Lilywhites without scoring.
Earl, who had a spell on loan in non-league with Lancaster City in 2017, joined Bolton on loan in the summer but picked up an ankle injury on the opening day which sidelined him until November.
In total 6ft 4in tall Earl made 10 starts and one sub appearance for the Trotters, initially playing at left-back, which has been his primary role up to this season, before latterly moving to centre-half. Bolton manager Keith Hill opted not to renew his loan last week.
Earl is likely to go straight into the squad for Tuesday’s trip to Oxford United.
Photos: Action Images/ITFC
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