EX-MIDDLESBROUGH and Sunderland forward Sam Greenwood will have another opportunity to earn a permanent transfer after linking up with Preston North End on loan for the coming Championship season.

Preston have an option to make the deal permanent at the end of the campaign, as Boro did last season.

Boro's agreement with Leeds to make Greenwood's loan deal permanent for just £1.5m this summer had they wished looked like good business early last term, with the 22-year-old having made an impressive start to life at the Riverside.

But his form dipped in the second half of the campaign and it was no surprise that Boro eventually opted against extending Greenwood's stay on Teesside.

With the former Sunderland youngster not featuring in Daniel Farke's plans at his parent club Leeds, Greenwood was again made available this summer, with Preston acting fast to sign a player who they wanted 12 months ago but missed out to Boro.


And Greenwood was delighted to get his future resolved early in pre-season.

He said: “I think it’s perfect timing really so I can get a pre-season under my belt. Last season when I went to Middlesbrough I couldn’t get that in because I was injured in pre-season. I think it’s really important that I can get a good connection with the boys for when the season comes and be ready to go.

“When I knew that Ryan (Lowe, Preston boss) wanted me, I believe he’s a manager that can get the best out of me. I know how good he is, a young up-and-coming manager, so it gives me confidence to play under him.

“I was doing some training out in Spain (last summer), with a coach who’s one of his friends. He came along to watch and saw some of my finishing - that’s why he must’ve wanted to sign me! It’s really important. It shows he believes in me and I’m sure he’s followed me since then. I can’t wait to play for him.”

Greenwood played 37 times for Boro last season, scoring five goals, and although he didn't do enough to earn a permanent switch, he believes his time on Teesside was beneficial.

He said: “The loan at Middlesbrough last season was amazing and I learned a lot, especially under the manager there. Michael Carrick taught me a lot about the game and hopefully Preston will get the best out of me this season."

Boro have already added to their forward line this summer with the arrival of Delano Burgzorg. There are high hopes for Finn Azaz this coming season, while Riley McGree is back fully fit, though there remains some uncertainty surrounding his contract situation, with the Australian international moving into the final year of his deal.

Isaiah Jones is looking to kick on again after a good season and Carrick will also be looking forward to having Marcus Forss back fit, though the Finnish attacker currently remains sidelined with a hamstring injury. Alex Gilbert had a promising end to last season.