Preston North End have completed their fifth permanent signing of the January transfer window with the signing of Rochdale full back Joe Rafferty.
The Liverpool-born defender has agreed a three-and-half-year deal at Deepdale and joins from the Spotland club for an undisclosed fee.
Joe, 25, came through the Academy at Liverpool and was with the Reds from nine-year-old until 18, after which he joined Dale and has played over 250 appearances in six-and-a-half years with Keith Hill’s side.
He takes the No.15 shirt vacated by fellow full back Calum Woods and after putting pen to paper he spoke to his excitement at getting started.
“Once I knew there was interest from Preston North End, I couldn’t wait to get the deal over the line; this is a massive club,” he said.
“I have been at Rochdale for six years, played a lot of games and I think I can bring some experience into the club. I had a good chat with the manager and he came across very well. I understand what he wants and I hope I can do well for him and the club.”
Manager Alex Neil, who adds Joe to previous signings Josh Ginnelly, Jayden Stockley, Brad Potts and Connor Ripley, feels the new man will add further versatility to his squad.
He said: “Joe is flexible. He played left back and right back in his last game! He is a really good character, with good qualities – he will get up and down the pitch – and he will add good competition in that area.
“I think it will be a really good challenge for Joe, to come up and show what he can do and it is a challenge he should relish. He has been at a big club, taken a step back to play games and hopefully now he is ready to kick on and show his abilities at a higher level and we are very hopeful he can go on and do well.”