Preston North End have signed Irish international winger Aiden McGeady on a season-long loan from Premier League Everton.
Glasgow-born, the player – who has earned 85 caps since making his international debut back in 2004 – was due to be involved with Robbie Keane’s final game for his country, but was granted leave from the squad to finalise the paperwork.
Speaking after the deal was submitted to the authorities the new North End No.14 revealed the commitment he had shown to make the move go through.
“I am delighted to sign. It came about pretty quickly,” he said. “It was only yesterday that I heard it might be a possibility and then by this morning I had heard that it wasn’t happening and was off the table and then about three or four hours ago I heard that it was back on again, so I was quite excited to get it sorted and I am now looking forward to getting back playing and helping the team.
“I didn’t want the risk of it not happening by going to the game. It is obviously Robbie Keane’s last game, but there is paperwork that has to get signed and I thought I might have to do a medical today, so I was anxious about what might happen, but the manager was fine with me, he understood the situation, so I stayed behind when the team left and got all the paperwork through and sorted it out myself – I could probably be my own agent!”
PNE manager Simon Grayson felt the addition of the former Spartak Moscow man to his squad was a coup for the club: “It's a fantastic signing for us obviously, he's played at the highest level, he's a Republic of Ireland international, and he's a player who has got fantastic ability.”
“He's got pace, good feet, good delivery, so I think he is really good signing for us, a real coup given his pedigree and the clubs that he has played for previously.”
McGeady will remain with Ireland for their World Cup qualifier against Serbia on Monday before joining up with his new team-mates for the first time later next week ahead of the next Championship game, at home to Barnsley on 10th September.