Paul Gallagher is the first man to play 100 times on loan for one club
AS CARLOS Tevez fired Juventus into the quarter-finals of the Champions League on Wednesday night, the former Manchester United striker probably did not realise he had just lost an intriguing place in English football history.
The night before Juve downed Borussia Dortmund, with the help of a Tevez double, Preston North End forward Paul Gallagher overhauled the Argentine to become the first player to make 100 loan appearances for an English club during a 2-0 victory over Peterborough.
The 30-year-old, who is currently on loan from Premier League side Leicester City, has accumulated his century across three separate loan spells, with Tevez’s 99 appearances coming in one stint on loan at Manchester United from West Ham.
While Gallagher may not be one of the Lilywhites own, noone has made more appearances for Simon Grayson’s side this campaign as they chase automatic promotion from League One.
And with his Leicester contract set to expire in the summer, Gallagher is hoping to rack up plenty more appearances at Deepdale, should he sign on a permanent basis.
“I just enjoy playing football and I’ve been lucky enough that I’ve been at this club for three loan deals to get to 100 appearances, but hopefully it’s a lot more,” he said.
“It’s a proud moment for me – I know it’s a loan but 100 games at one club is a great achievement and hopefully it can be a lot more with a few more goals to come.
“But it’s not about me, it’s about getting three points and I want to try and help this club get to where they want to be – and even higher.
“We’re all pushing in the right direction – it’s a team game, not an individual game but playing 100 matches is fantastic.”
With the Foxes struggling at the bottom of the Premier League and Preston riding high at the top of League One, Gallagher could well find himself facing his parent club in the Championship next year.
But, for now, the ex-Blackburn player is focusing on helping his adopted team stave off their challengers for the second automatic promotion spot behind runaway leaders Bristol City.
“There are going to be twists and turns, we know that, and that’s why we need to stay levelheaded.
“We’ve got experienced players here that will do that and we’ve also got a good coaching staff.
“We’re going to take it game by game and see where we are at the end of the season. If we keep playing like we are, then we’ll be up there,” he added.
LOAN RANGER: Paul Gallagher is in the record books and, inset, Allan Nyom