Last week, Preston secured the signing of Charlton Athletic defender Patrick Bauer.
The German centre back penned a three-year deal with North End, having run down his Charlton contract. Bauer’s last kick of the ball for Charlton was to win them the League One playoff final, securing a return to the Championship.
North End fans are mostly delighted with the move. We needed a dominant leader at the back, and Bauer arrives on a free transfer at a good age; what’s not to like?
Another great note from the move is that Bauer had been wanted by Blackburn Rovers. Tony Mowbray’s side had bids rejected last summer (Standard), and we believe they offered Bauer a deal this summer too.
Bauer suggested to Lancs Live on Tuesday that he only wanted to join Preston once he’d spoken to Alex Neil, leaving Blackburn frustrated after a year-long pursuit.
Today, Rovers boss Mowbray has commented on the deal. Mowbray confirmed to the Lancashire Telegraph that he had spoken to Bauer about a move, but respected his decision to join Preston instead.
Mowbray also noted that he saw Bauer as competition for his defenders, and believes he’ll find a similar role at Preston.
“We tried to sign him to give us some stability to our squad and then try and force his way in,” said Mowbray. “I have been aware of him for a long time and that he was running down his contract. I thought he was a man, not to force his way straight in to our starting XI, but over time try and do that. And it would have been down to him challenge and get in the team.”
“I’m sure that will be the same at Preston because they have a pretty solid defensive unit and that is the challenge. We had discussions but I totally respect his decision,” he added.
We’re expecting Bauer to really challenge Jordan Storey straight away, as he fits the bill as a partner for Ben Davies. As for Blackburn, it’s nice to know that not only did we dominate them on the pitch last season, but now off the pitch too with a deal for one of their top targets.