Preston North End captain Alan Browne said it was a relief to sign a contract until the summer of 2024 with what he described as a ‘fantastic club’.
The Lilywhites’ No.8 put pen to paper on a brand new three-and-a-half-year deal and said that he hoped it would be a ‘successful’ time for the club.
Alan, 25, has already made 273 appearances since his move from Cork City in January 2014 and he told iFollow PNE that he had been excited by the transfer window business, which had helped make his mind up to signing a deal that will take him past ten years at Deepdale.
“I have been here a long time and it is such a relief to get it over the line and have a few more years of me being at this fantastic club and hopefully we can make the next coming years successful,” said the Irishman.
“It was important to my decision that I wanted to see the ambition of the club and with players coming in this window – especially with a lot of clubs not doing a lot of business – it is a step in the right direction and I wanted to be a part of that.
“It is time to take the next step with my career. I had different opinions from different people and I wanted to gather as many opinions as I possibly could I felt that this was the right decision for me and hopefully I can progress with my own career, as well as with the football club.
“It is crazy to think [he will reach ten years before the end of the contract] and that did cross my mind when I signed.
“To spend ten years at any football club, for any player, is an achievement; it shows loyalty from the player and from the club as well and to have that kind of relationship is something really special to me and if it gets to ten, hopefully it can be a few more after that.
“The best thing is that it is done! The relief of it as well. My phone has been hot the last few weeks and I have felt a bit guilty with my family for being on my phone all the time, so to get it over the line is a massive relief and it is great to get it over the line… I am delighted with my decision.”
He also admitted that relationships he has formed within the club were an important factor, including with manager Alex Neil: “My relationship with everyone is important,” he continued.
“I have a great relationship with all the staff and the one with the gaffer is important to have. He has a good relationship with the lads and to have people like that in the right places is really important.”
In recent weeks, the skipper’s honesty has also been evident, with emotional interviews after the defeat at Luton and his injury-time winner at Derby County, showing he wears his heart on his sleeve every time he pulls on the lilywhite.
“I think it is best to be as honest as you possibly can,” explained the midfielder. “There are a lot of clichéd comments in football and as a fan, you probably get fed up hearing the same excuses, because it is easy to make up excuses and blame some factor, but sometimes you just have to take a hit and take the blame and that’s what I try to do – take responsibility.
“I don’t get too low or caught in the moment and get too high when things are going well, it is about being as honest as you can with yourself, I think that is important.”