Stoke City have completed the signing of Ben Pearson with the former Preston North End securing a reunion with Alex Neil.

The Potters were busy on deadline day with deals both coming in and going out.

Star defender Harry Souttar has left the club for a big move to Premier League side Leicester City.

Stoke had to bring in a couple of new faces and swooped to land Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe.

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The Potters also pounced for Bournemouth midfielder Pearson, securing him on loan until the end of the season.

“Ben is a player I know really well and I’m sure with his experience he will prove to be a fantastic addition to our squad,” said Stoke boss Neil.

Pearson will now work under Neil once again having been his key man at PNE.

Pearson had forced his way into the PNE side under Simon Grayson but really kicked on to become a quality midfielder under Neil.

The 28-year-old turned out 116 times under Neil at North End, registering one goal and three assists in the process.

Pearson was absolutely vital to Neil’s PNE side and his cut-price move to Bournemouth in January 2021 was a major blow.

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Neil ended up losing his job just a couple of months later but he has now secured a reunion with Pearson at Stoke.

Whether Stoke can move to secure him permanently in the summer remains to be seen but, based on his time at PNE, this is a quality signing for Neil and the Potters.

The saving grace for North End is that we have already played Stoke twice this term, so won’t have to face Pearson before the end of the season!

Seeing Neil and Pearson back together will sting for some PNE fans but at least they won’t be back at Deepdale any time soon.

Add in that Stoke have also secured a deal for playmaker Bersant Celina – a player Neil wanted to sign for North End many years ago – and the Scot is using his time at PNE to influence his Stoke side.

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