Coventry City Target Star With Uncertain Future

With a contract decision yet to be made, Preston North End‘s captain, Alan Browne has recently been linked with moves to Coventry City and Sheffield United.

In a recent report on Alan Nixon’s Patreon site, the former Cork City midfielder has been linked with the Blades – as they return to the Championship following a disappointing Premier League campaign, as well as the recent FA Cup semi-finalists, Coventry.

The North End midfielder has been at the Lancashire club for ten years and has accumulated 414 appearances since arriving from the Irish Premier Division in January 2014. This impressive longevity has landed Browne the captaincy in recent years and he has grown to be a huge fan favourite at Deepdale.

This season, the 29-year-old ranks in the 100th percentile for duels won, when compared to other midfielders in the Championship, with a staggering 244 according to FotMob. The Preston skipper has also managed 41 successful dribbles from his central role this season, as well as 232 recoveries.

It comes as no surprise that Coventry themselves are looking at such a profile. With their midfield options being depleted ahead of the inevitable interest for some of their key assets, such as: Callum O’Hare and Ben Sheaf, a few refreshing additions would be perfect for Mark Robins’ side. The Sky Blues’ retained list also omitted Liam Kelly from the club, following the expiration of his contract.

Coventry have come close to success recently in the FA Cup, with a very narrow defeat in the semi-finals to Manchester United on penalties, after a dramatic comeback from 3-0 down. Their 2022/23 play-off attempt saw them reach the final, but the Midlands side sadly missed out on a return to the top flight. This could indicate a chance at a future Premier League push for Browne, should he join City.

The Sky Blues have some healthy competition for the 29-year-old’s signature however, as North End have offered a huge contract to Browne in order to keep him at the club. The Blades have also looked into acquiring the Irishman’s expertise this summer. It looks likely that the Lancashire side are in the ‘driving seat’ at the moment, with the two other Championship sides reportedly struggling to match Preston’s offer.

Writer’s View

Browne has been one of Preston’s most consistent performers and can be described as a ‘jack of all trades’. Coventry would be a very appealing option for the Ireland international, with an immediate starting spot looking promising considering their current squad. The uncertainty around the Blades’ bounce-back next season could put him off a stay in Sheffield.

If a matched offer from the Sky Blues came in (one which rivals the Lilywhites’), it could be likely that the 29-year-old will be tempted by the prospect of a more realistic play-off push with Coventry. Robins will certainly be hoping to snap him up on a free this summer.

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