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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

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Joe Garner: Carlisle United did not stand a chance

Joe Garner has said that Carlisle United stood no chance of signing him once his boyhood idols Preston made their move.

Joe Garner photo
Joe Garner

The striker, a top transfer window target of Blues boss Greg Abbott, snubbed his former club by joining North End on an 18-month deal.

And Garner said the emotional pull of the Deepdale club, where he was once a season-ticket holder, was simply too strong to resist.

The 24-year-old said: “As soon as I knew the club [Preston] were interested in bringing me in, it was the only place I wanted to come.

“I used to have a season ticket here, quite a while back, and I used to come every week. A lot of my family support Preston, my little brother comes to the games and I’m happy to be here.”

Garner scored eight goals in 18 games for United in a 93-day loan this season, with Abbott then going public on his wish to strike a half-season loan or a permanent deal for the frontman.

But after agreeing a settlement on his Watford contract the combative striker now joins Graham Westley’s squad and could make his debut in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy at Coventry on Thursday.

Garner insisted he was looking forward to working with manager Westley, adding: “If you look at the manager’s record, it is second to none. He did an unbelievable job at Stevenage, he is now bringing his own players in [to Preston] and it can only get better.”

United have not made any comment on their own pursuit of Garner, who will face a reunion with Abbott’s side when Preston visit Brunton Park on April 13.

JColman@cngroup.co.uk

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