The final week of the January transfer window is upon us, so of course it’s time for a key Preston player to be linked away.

We experienced the same thing with Jordan Hugill in 2018, and he joined West Ham United on deadline day that year. We escaped any big exits last year, but the rumours are starting up again.

Today, Alan Nixon has reported in The Sun (26/01, p61) that Leicester City are eyeing up Ben Davies. The caveat though is that the Foxes like him as an alternative to Jannik Vestergaard, in case they can’t sign the Southampton man.

Alex Neil talks to Ben Davies of Preston North End. (Photo by Ben Early/Getty Images)

The Sun claim that Leicester want Vestergaard for £15million, so this may now be a situation for Preston fans to keep an eye on – but Davies being a backup target for him seems odd.

Vestergaard’s main qualities are his huge 6ft 6in frame and his aerial ability. At 27, he’s got a fair amount of experience and has international caps with Denmark.

Conversely, Davies is quite small for a centre back, but makes up that with decent pace, reading of the game and ability to play out from the back. He’s younger than Vestergaard and much less experienced, so the pair seem like polar opposites.

Jannik Vestergaard of Southampton. (Photo by Matt Watson/Southampton FC via Getty Images)

Preston simply can’t afford to let Davies go now, not after breaking back into the top six. Yes, his contract ends in 2021, and North End will earn a smaller fee if he is sold in the summer.

However, Davies is key to Alex Neil’s side, and selling him now would send out the completely wrong message. It’s no great surprise that Davies is a wanted man, and he’s destined for a Premier League career, but now is not the time to sell him.

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