When Preston North End signed Joe Garner on a free transfer from Watford in January 2013 no one could have predicted the impact he would make at Deepdale.
He didn’t manage to get a goal in his first few months, but from November that year, following a change of manager in the February of that year, he started a run that led to an amazing record in front of goal and ultimately the prize of League One player of the year and promotion at Wembley.
This evening he gets the first chance to come up against the side that allowed him a chance to join his boyhood club and when he spoke to The One And Only ahead of the visit of the Premier League side.
“I’m looking forward to it,” the No.14 told the matchday programme. “It is always nice when you play against your old club. You see some old faces, even though there are not that many of them left there anymore!
“The whole club in general has changed since I was there.
“If you look at them in the past, they always tried to bring youth through and have local, home grown talent and English talent, but now the club has been taken over by foreign owners and if you look at the squad on a Saturday, you won’t recognise many names.
“They have done very well though; they got promoted and I am sure the fans are happy going to big clubs every week to support their team.
“There are a number of ways you can look at the change; would you rather go and watch local talent or would you rather go and watch your team playing against Premier League sides every week?
“I think that nine times out of ten supporters would pick going to the likes of Old Trafford every week rather than League One or Championship grounds.
“It is always exciting playing against your old club; seeing old faces. I don’t think I have anything to prove to them. I left there to come to Preston and it was probably the best thing I have ever done.”
To read more from the North End talisman and find out much more about tonight’s opponents and many other interesting features, get hold of the programme for just £2.