The rumours of Preston targeting James Wilson always seemed strange, but they’re over now.
The Daily Record reported last North End were in the race to sign Wilson, battling Aberdeen for him. We suggested at the time that the rumours seemed flimsy at best.
Rumours initially started on Facebook, spread to Twitter, and possibly into that Daily Record report. Last week, the LEP basically confirmed there was no interest, with the club making it clear no deal was happening.
For anybody thinking that North End were misdirecting people, pretending that they weren’t interested in Wilson in order to avoid a major battle for his signature, the rumour can now be put to bed.
The Daily Mail claim that Wilson is set to return to Aberdeen on a two-year deal. Wilson spent last season on loan at Aberdeen, and will return to Pittodrie on a free transfer.
Wilson’s Manchester United contract expired on Sunday, meaning he’s only really had a couple of days as a free agent. A permanent move to Aberdeen at least brings him some continuity, having endured a difficult few years.
The 23-year-old only scored four times in 32 games for Aberdeen, and there’s just no way he has the quality Preston need in attack. He’s no better than Louis Moult, and even he struggles for playing time.
Once touted for big things at Manchester United having burst onto the scene in 2014, it’s been a difficult few years for Wilson. A major injury at Derby County in 2016 really hampered his development, and he’s only scored five first-team goals since.
That’s not the calibre of signing Preston should be in for this summer, and whilst the move was played down last week, there was always still a chance that he could pop up on the radar.
Now though, the rumours can be killed off once and for all. Wilson will be staying in Scotland, competing with Stevie May at Aberdeen. Hopefully North End have bigger and better strikers in mind, but at least we can cross Wilson off any sort of list now.