Clitheroe boss keen to build link with Blackburn Rovers

Jordan Preston in action for Blackburn Rovers Under 21s against Norwich City, and, below, on his Clitheroe debut against Burscough
Jordan Preston in action for Blackburn Rovers Under 21s against Norwich City, and, below, on his Clitheroe debut against Burscough

Clitheroe boss Simon Garner hopes to further links with Blackburn Rovers after being impressed by on-loan striker Jordan Preston.

The 18-year-old is on loan at Shawbridge until April 5th, and scored on his debut in a 4-2 win over Burscough.

A product of the Rovers Academy, Preston has hit 19 goals for the Under 18s this season, and three for the Under 21s.

The Scotland Under 19 international was kept out in a 2-0 defeat at Ossett Town on Saturday, but Garner is pleased with what he has seen so far: “He’s done well. He was frustrated on Saturday as he didn’t have many opportunities, but his quality is obvious.

“He trained really well and his ability is there for all to see.

“It’s probably been a shock coming down to this level, especially the pitch at Ossett, but it will put him in good stead for when he returns to Rovers, and hopefully help him push on towards the first team.

“Eric Kinder (Blackburn Under 21 manager) has been superb with us, and we have sorted out a friendly for the summer.

“It’s a good link to have, and hopefully Jordan won’t be the last player we take from them.”

Meanwhile, after suffering a seventh-successive away defeat on Saturday, Garner is pleased to get back to home turf tomorrow against Cammell Laird.

The Blues have six games remaining, and the player-boss is hoping to end the season as strongly as possible: “Our home form has been superb, and our away form pathetic, to be honest.

“We’ll try and rectofy that in the remaining few games and take that into next season.

“I’m struggling to put my finger on the away form, we play on grass, with two goals and the same markings, so I don’t know what it is.

“It’s something we have to sort out, and we’re working on it.

“We have no worries in terms of staying in the league, so we want to win as many points as possible as we can before the end of the season.

“There are a lot of positives, but it’s frustrating we’re not getting the results.

“We’ll find out who wants to be here next season now.

“We want to see who is up for it. It’s a great opportunity for them at this level.

“The lads are having to learn fast. A lot haven’t played at this level, and are gaining experience and getting consecutive games. It’s up to them to seize the opportunity.”