Monday saw two Preston North End players leave on a free transfer as Josh Earl left to join Fleetwood Town, and Tom Bayliss moved on to Shrewsbury Town.

Whilst Bayliss was expected to leave after a difficult three years at the club for him, Earl’s abrupt departure came as a bit of a surprise.

Ryan Lowe clearly wants to stamp his own mark on the playing staff, and with only goalkeeping additions so far, he is now making space to bring some new faces into the door.

Commenting on the outgoing news today, the Preston North End manager wished both Earl and Bayliss the best for their future but admitting there probably wasn’t much point in either of them sticking around at the club, when they could get first-team football elsewhere.


For Tom Bayliss, Lowe never had the chance to work with him, as the midfielder was away on loan with Wigan Athletic, and although he was part of the promotion success with them, Lowe admitted he even struggled to get into their side. So there was little point in bringing him back to try and make another push for a starting spot.

“His career didn’t go down well so far being here, so for his benefit and ours there was no point in him coming back when we are trying to get other players through the door.”

As for Josh Earl, he was used regularly in the left-wing back role but the manager insinuated that Earl wasn’t enjoying that position and it didn’t suit him, and after a chat with Scott Brown he felt a move to Fleetwood would suit all parties.

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“Josh has opted for a new challenge, we had discussions at the end of the season on where he can fit in my team, but he has opted to play more as a defender. It’s important for Josh to get his career back on track and be one of the best defenders in that division.

“These players won’t be the only ones surplus to requirements, they will be others looking for a new challenge at another football club”.

Josh Harrop and Matthew Olusunde are two more likely to leave this summer, but there could be even more departures to allow Ryan Lowe more flexibility with his squad.

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