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First Team News

Alex Neil Feels Ryan Ledson’s Character Will Be Perfect For PNE

17 May 2018

Manager Alex Neil believes that new signing Ryan Ledson will be a perfect fit at Preston North End.

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Speaking after the 20-year-old agreed a three-year deal, the PNE boss feels that he will bring similar facets to other members of the squad and add further grit to the group.

“We have a got a lot of players [who are young but have a lot of games under their belts] at the club, but Ryan is coming in and is probably younger than most of the other ones, but still has that experience, which is great,” he told PNE.Com.

“I can’t focus on his character enough; he has a real grit, determination and willingness to win and that is something we are renowned for – making sure we have that never say die spirit – and I think he will add to that.

“He had a great upbringing when he was at Everton as a kid and he has come through the England ranks as well. He has played 100 league games and he is only 20 years of age and he has played at a good level.

“When we have been watching him and all the bits we have seen of him, he will certainly contribute to what we are trying to do.

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“I think it is a great signing for us. I think he has a bright future ahead of him and I think he is the right type of character we want at the club as well.

“We are losing one of these type of characters in John Welsh and I think we are replacing him with a younger version who can hopefully go and kick on and have a great career.”

The club were linked with a move for the Liverpool-born midfielder in January and Alex explained that a lot of work is done behind the scenes to identify and research players before the investment is made.

“We have been to see him play,” he continued. “We want to try and do our homework as much as possible; we treat the club’s money as much as our own money, so we want to make sure that when we spend it, we are spending it wisely, we don’t do anything on a hunch.

“All the relative work you can do into a signing, we put into it, however, what you can never do is guarantee what somebody is going to do when you put them into a different environment, but we are really confident that Ryan is going to hopefully improve the squad and the next bit is up to Ryan to show everybody what he can do.”

And with the deal done early the gaffer thinks both parties will benefit from the chance to work together from day one of pre-season: “It is great for everybody to get it done now. Ryan will have to learn how we work and his body will need to adapt to the higher intensity of training and the intensity of the Championship will go up for him as well – it will be a real learning curve for him.

“The fact that we have got him from day one of pre-season is a huge advantage and hopefully we will get him up to speed as quickly as possible and he can show us what he can do,” he added.

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