Paul Gallagher has made himself a modern day Preston hero.
North End brought Gallagher back for a second spell at Deepdale in 2013, and he’s played for nobody else since. The end result of almost two years on loan in League One was promotion to the Championship, when he then joined Preston for free from Leicester City.
A skilful forward in his first loan spell at Preston way back in 2007, Gallagher has reinvented himself. Now a deep-lying playmaker, Gallagher dictates the game with his passing range and creativity, whilst his set pieces are a constant source of goalscoring chances.
At 35 now, Gallagher may be heading towards the end of his career, but he’s still an integral part of the Preston side. Gallagher has, much like many other players, taken his game forward under Alex Neil, and it would be little surprise to see him sign another new contract this season.
Many would love to see Gallagher join Neil’s coaching staff when he does hang his boots up, and he appears to have taken the first steps towards that.
The i published an interview with Gallagher over the weekend, and noted in there that Gallagher is studying Neil’s methods closely, because he’s currently coaching Preston’s under-16’s alongside his playing responsibilities.
Gallagher did tell the LEP in 2018 that he had been taking coaching courses, working towards his UEFA ‘B’ badge at the time. This appears to be the first time that such a claim has been made about Gallagher’s work with the Under-16’s, but fans will love to hear it.
Hopefully Gallagher’s coaching goes well, and he can keep his connection with Preston going for many years yet, even beyond his playing career.