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Preston snap up Man United youngster

Liam Grimshaw did not progress to the Manchester United first team. Credit: PA

Championship side Preston North End have snapped up youngster Liam Grimshaw from Manchester United.

Grimshaw, who has spent time on loan at Motherwell this season, can play in defence or midfield.

If you look back over the last few years there have been people like Danny Welbeck who have come here and of course David Beckham when he was younger.

There have been a lot of other permanent signings from Manchester United as well and hopefully this is a good chance for me to come here, play and improve.

– Liam Grimshaw

Preston sign Man United midfielder

Ben Pearson has moved to Deepdale. Credit: PA

Championship side Preston North End have completed the signing of Manchester United midfielder Ben Pearson.

Pearson, 21, has penned a two-and-a-half year deal at Deepdale in a deal worth in the region of £100,000.

The midfielder never made a first-team appearance for United but does have Football League experience thanks to loan spells at Barnsley.

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Man Utd youngster joins Preston on loan

Johnstone, right, out in Manchester with fellow United youngster Nick Powell. Credit: PA

Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone has signed for Preston on a one-month loan deal.

Johnstone enjoyed a successful loan spell at North End last year, helping them gain promotion to the Sky Bet Championship, and the 22-year-old has now gone back to his home town club for a month.

The goalkeeper, whose father Glenn played for Preston, is eligible to play in the club's next game against Rotherham on January 2.

Johnstone is yet to play for United, but was on the substitutes' bench for the first six matches of the season while David de Gea was the subject of speculation linking him with a move to Real Madrid.

Preston and Middlebrough play out fiery goalless draw

There were a few tasty tackles flying in. Credit: PA

Middlesbrough's mission to go one better and achieve promotion from the Championship this term started with a 0-0 stalemate at newly-promoted Preston.

Boro were in competitive action for the first time since a 2-0 loss to Norwich in the play-off final and there was little evidence on this showing that Aitor Karanka's men, now shorn of striker Patrick Bamford, are better equipped to reach the top table this time around.

Aside from a Grant Leadbitter effort which flew narrowly wide and Albert Adomah almost stealing in twice in the second period, they failed to carry much attacking threat in the first game since Karanka signed a new four-year deal this week.

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Preston boss Grayson: Westley was unpopular

Simon Grayson sorted things out at Preston. Credit: PA

Preston manager Simon Grayson says he had to work hard to ensure he brought the squad back together after Graham Westley's spell in charge at Deepdale.

Wesley was a decisive character at Preston, coming in for criticism from players and fans alike, but Grayson has brought unity, proved by their play-off final place.

I didn’t think it could get much lower than it had in terms of the harmony between the supporters, players and the staff. When we came here there was a lot of negativity between the supporters and everybody else. That’s not helpful.

What we had to do straight away was get everyone back onside. That means winning games, getting the connection again and everybody – the players – coming in and enjoying work.

But also supporters coming and focusing on what they want to do and that’s support the club and the players who are playing. I think that had become a side issue. People weren’t coming in here to support the team, but to probably have a go at previous management staff.

That’s all history. What we have now is a unified club. Everybody wants the same thing. That’s played a massive part in the success in the two years we’ve been here.

– Simon Grayson

Preston striker Garner dreams of Wembley winner

Joe Garner will live every football fan's dream at Wembley on Sunday when he bids to fire boyhood club Preston to promotion with victory over Swindon in the Sky Bet League One play-off final.

The 27-year-old striker has already had a season he is unlikely to forget after his 25 league goals earned him the League One Player of the Year award.

Joe Garner is Preston's key man. Credit: PA

Has he dreamed of scoring the winning goal in his first appearance at Wembley? "Definitely," he said.

"To score any goal there would be a nice feeling. Anybody growing up would want to do that for the team they supported. I'm really looking forward to the game."

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