Former Dundalk duo are moving to the English club
Preston North End manager Simon Grayson has spoken about his hopes for Daryl Horgan and Andy Boyle after the Dundalk duo signed for the English Championship club.
Both players will ply their trade in the English second tier after playing key roles for Dundalk domestically and in Europe over recent years and also earned call ups to the Ireland squad in November.
Speaking to Off The Ball's Kevin Kilbane, who started his career at Preston, Grayson talked about the club's initial interest in the players.
"I think we've been aware of them for quite a few months now. As Dundalk got more successful, the profile was lifted on them as a football club and the two individuals who had done ever so well," he said.
"Ultimately as it all progressed, we kept more of an eye on them and watched them more and it just came to a point where we got involved in trying to bring them to the football club.
Preston North End's manager Simon Grayson during the Sky Bet Championship match at Deepdale, Preston. Picture by Clint Hughes PA Wire/PA Images
"I met both players individually and Andy agreed to sign and then I met Daryl a week later and a couple of days later, he'd agreed to sign. So I think it's good business for us and a good progression for them as individuals in this stage of their careers."
Grayson says that the fact that there is a real chance of first team action at Preston was one of the main points that made the move attractive for the players as well as the fact that the North End manager knows the Irish international management team.
As signings for January, they are not available until the registration window opens in the New Year, but Grayson spoke about how quickly they could potentially see first team action - possibly even the home FA Cup third round tie against Premier League giants Arsenal on January 7th.
"They're going to come over next week just to see the lads and integrate them," he said.
"Very much after that, we'll try and get them up to speed as quick as possible. Both have had a few days away on holiday but I think they'll both be chomping at the bit to get into training with us. Potentially, the first game they're going to be available for will be the Arsenal cup tie. So if they were to be involved, then it's some game to make your debut as such. They're here for the long term, not just for the first few games," he said.
Citing Dundalk's Europa League group stage experience, Grayson added that both Horgan and Boyle have proven that they can mix it at a high level, and highlighted the strong Irish presence at the club among the playing and coaching staff.