Well, if you were sick of North End looking to the Irish market, get ready for more.
According to The Sun, Preston are interested in snapping up UCD attacker Neil Farrugia this summer. Farrugia turns 20 today, and has emerged as a promising young player over in Ireland.
Farrugia is primarily a winger, and scored on his Republic of Ireland Under-21 debut against Luxembourg in March. That came after Farrugia decided to pursse international football with Ireland over France, Malta and Spain.
This season, Farrugia has one goal in four outings for UCD in Ireland’s top flight. It’s thought that Peter Ridsdale was supposed to watch him on Friday, but may now scout him against Cork City tomorrow instead.
Intriguingly, Farrugia recently went on trial with Manchester City. He’s thought to have impressed, so North End would be making an interesting move by attempting to swoop in for the youngster.
If Farrugia arrives, it again hints at some sort of development squad being re-formed. He may not quite be ready for first-team football, but adding talented youngsters with a first-team pathway may set up North End well.
It would also continue the influx of League of Ireland players. Alan Browne started the run in 2014, before Daryl Horgan, Andy Boyle, Kevin O’Connor, Seani Maguire and Graham Burke joined him.
Only Browne and Maguire have been successes, to the point where some fans would rather stay away from Ireland now. In Farrugia though, North End may have found one for the future – just like Browne was more than five years ago.