A loan deal is often the football equivalent of that ‘we need to talk’ moment in a relationship that has run its course.
He was hoping for the fact that Tottenham had loaned Troy Parrott for the entire season. Despite the positive glow of Parrot joining Spurs for their pre-season tour in Asia, the move was on the cards for some time.
Preston is more pleased today, having withheld loan offers from rival clubs, including those that could potentially offer Parrot more cracks in promotion to the Premier League next season. Preston finished at the bottom of the table in the final season, 11 points away from the play-offs. But the important news after the deal was confirmed was that Parrot signed a new three-year contract with Spurs before leaving to play with Preston.
Newcastle United and Brighton have loaned Parrot international teammates Jeff Hendricks, Ciaran Clarke and Aaron Connolly this summer, but it is hard to see the trio playing for their native clubs again.
Spurs don’t look like a club that Parrot is about to break up with, but instead feel that, based on his solid past stints and a dominant attitude in the pre-season, he is someone to replace Antonio Conte. want around.
Harry Kane is a name that permeates the conversation around parrots. Preston will be the fourth time Parrot has been out on loan during his time at Spurs. Kane also had four loan spells from the club before he convinced them he was the real deal, made the most of that fourth and final loan, returned to Spurs, scoring in his Premier League full debut, And the rest is history.
It is unlikely Kane will still be at Tottenham in the summer of 2024: if Bayern Munich can persuade Barcelona to part with €50m for aging Robert Lewandowski, Spurs will be equally naive Will be confident of paying a better fee, and over the next two years an equally desperate, fallen giant is making room for a parrot-like player to replace Kane.
Parrot hasn’t always been a loan star – two goals in nearly 30 games for Millwall and Ipswich tell his story, but Milton Keynes was more of a home for him in his final stint, where he became a promotion-chasing player. Ended up in favor. Preston will have to work hard to convince Spurs to send him there, and it will be interesting to see if they position him as a leading striker or in a more supporting role at MK Dons.
They need goals. Last season only one Preston player scored double points, his second-highest scorer had only seven goals, and Ceny Maguire (one goal) had the lowest output of his career, so Preston knows he is Parrot-like. What do attackers want from talent?
At MK Dons, he found a comfort zone there and a fellow Dubliner (Warren O’Horra), as well as an under-21 teammate (Connor Coventry), would have helped him settle down far more than either Millwall or Ipswich. Senior team members Alan Brown and Robbie Brady played a role in luring them to Lancashire. “I’ve been talking to Brownie and Robby and just asking how it is around the place and they have nothing but nice things to say, so I’m happy to be here,” he said.
Parrott had a good season at club level last year and played a key role on the international stage. His injury-time goal at home to Lithuania in a friendly gave Ireland a 1–0 win over a poor team, a goal at home against a team that won 14 of their next four.
That win played a part in easing pressure on Stephen Kenny, who signed his new contract just before the March window. The June window was a test: after a poor performance in Armenia was qualifiedly dropped and Ukraine was benched for home losses, Parrot responded right at home to Scotland and was impressive again against Ukraine in Poland.
Ireland’s early exit in the World Cup qualifiers race and a stillborn Nations League campaign indicate that qualifying for Euro 2024 will be a test. But if Preston allows Parrot to climb the ladder on his way to potential greatness with Tottenham, all parties will benefit in the end.