Rangers last raided Preston in 2016 for Joe Garner – but they could come shopping at Deepdale again in 2020.

The Gers are keen on goalkeeper Declan Rudd according to Football Insider’s Pete O’Rourke, with plans to land him on the cheap. Rudd is out of contract next summer, so that gives Rangers a couple of avenues.

They can either target a pre-contract agreement once the January transfer window opens, or attempt a cut-price deal to tempt Preston into selling before he walks for nothing.

Rudd, 28, returned to North End in 2016 having previously spent 18 months on loan with the club, first arriving in 2013. It’s fair to say that whilst his loan spell was a success, his full-time return hasn’t been quite so smooth.

Preston North End’s Declan Rudd. (Photo by Rich Linley – CameraSport via Getty Images)

His first season was spent battling with Chris Maxwell for a first-team spot, which Maxwell mostly won. Last season, Rudd was up and down again, and whilst there has been some improvement this season, there are still issues in his game.

Rudd has let in some soft goals this term, notably at Millwall and Reading, and he’s often stuck to his line, which only serves to put anxiety into the Preston defence.

The rumour does smack of an agent attempting to force Preston into extending Rudd’s deal, especially having secured a new contract for Billy Bodin this week.

Preston North End’s Declan Rudd applauds the fans. (Photo by Rich Linley – CameraSport via Getty Images)

Yet North End may well face a decision to make, and the split in the fanbase about Rudd’s future sums up the issue.

Some fans think Rudd should be let go, as he simply costs North End too much – but others would only let him go as long as a quality replacement is lined up.

Others aren’t so sure, feeling the grass may not be greener, with fears that North End will sell Rudd and end up with a worse goalkeeper – and with the January transfer window drawing closer, Preston need to make up their minds about Rudd.

 

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