Championship clubs allegedly want Cork City striker Franco Umeh – could Preston return for another League of Ireland signing?

Now, we know what you’re thinking – please no more signings from the League of Ireland.

We can understand that stance given the mixed record Preston have in that market.

Alan Browne has been a success story following his 2014 move from Cork City and Seani Maguire has had his moments, but other signings have been disappointing.


Andy Boyle, Daryl Horgan, Kevin O’Connor and Graham Burke just didn’t work out and left Preston fans worried about more signings from the Emerald Isle.

Sure enough, Preston have backed away from that market since signing Burke, save for trials for Cork City youngsters Liam Murray and Joe O’Brien-Whitmarsh last year.

Some North End fans have though spotted claims from Kenny’s Kids, a reliable source on young Irish talent, suggesting that Premier League and Championship clubs want Cork City striker Franco Umeh.

Preston have decent ties to Cork City so could North End be in the mix?

Whilst researching about Umeh, we stumbled across this tweet from one of Umeh’s family members, showing the striker and his brother Jaden – now also with Cork City – decked out in Preston gear outside Deepdale in 2018.

Republic of Ireland v Andorra - UEFA U17 Championship Qualifier
Photo By Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile via Getty Images

It seems the pair came over to visit North End and possibly train whilst being attached to Ringmahon Rangers – the former club of both Alan Browne and Adam O’Reilly.

This means North End are surely at least aware of Umeh and may well be in the hunt for his signature moving forward.

Umeh, 18, would be one for the future having only appeared twice for Cork’s first team, but we saw how quickly Browne emerged as a first-team star.

Umeh is now featuring for Ireland’s Under-19’s and got himself off the mark with a goal against Wales last weekend.

Premier League interest means Preston would face a battle if they do want Umeh, but his previous visit to North End and his ties to both Ringmahon Rangers and Cork City mean this is one to keep an eye on.

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Olly Dawes
Olly Dawes

Olly is an experienced football journalist. He spends his time tweeting about football, NFL, video games, FPL, and wrestling.

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