Preston Secure O'Connor As Barkhuizen Extends
The departure of Preston boss Simon Grayson for Sunderland last week didn't have an impact on the proposed deal for Kevin O'Connor, the defender has joined from Cork City.
O'Connor, like teammate Sean Maguire who agreed to join Preston earlier in June, will officially link up with North End on 24th July and his three year deal at Deepdale will kick in.
Republic of Ireland U21 international O'Connor, 22, has joined for an undisclosed fee from the League of Ireland Premier Division side, currently leading the way in his homeland.
His arrival, a boost following Grayson's decision to leave, saw further good news come over the weekend when Tom Barkhuizen agreed a new long-term deal of his own.
Barkhuizen, 23, brought in from Morecambe in January, impressed last season scoring six times in 17 appearances.
The forward has now committed to a new three year deal at Preston, which will keep him at the club until 2020, at least.
He told the Official Website: 'I was told when I first signed that if I did well that I would get rewarded and the first week after the season finished, my agent came in and it was the easiest decision I've made for a very long time. I think they had agreed everything within half an hour and thankfully today I've got it signed and we can look forward to the season ahead. I want to become more consistent, I think over last season at both clubs I was pretty consistent and hopefully I can take that into this season and play plenty of games for this club and do well.'
One that continues to be linked with an exit from Preston is Stevie May.
Aberdeen made an approach for the Scottish forward last week and Dons boss Derek McInnes, of course the man who turned down Sunderland before Grayson said yes, has admitted his interest.
However, the Scottish Premiership side know any deal has to be done at our pace.
McInnes was quoted by the BBC: 'It's no secret we'd liked to bring a different type of striker in. We've got a few options and a few enquiries in for some players. That interest has been taken a bit further for Stevie, but, again, he's Preston's player. There's a lot of change at their club at the minute over the manager, so we need to go, really, at their pace.'
May, 24, who has previous with McInnes at St Johnstone, is a player Aberdeen hope to sign but they also have other targets.
He added: 'But, again, happy to talk more if we can get a deal done. He's not the only one we're looking at for that position. We've got a few enquiries in for a few players and not everything's going to fall for you, but hopefully we can get the players that we want and certainly the positions filled that we want before the European game.'