PNE signed the ex-Tottenham Hotspur and Fulham man on transfer deadline day
Josh Onomah is ready to get his head down and graft after signing on the dotted line at Preston North End. It’s been a hectic 48 hours for the 25-year-old, but his Deepdale move wasn’t his first on deadline day and he’s taking it all in his stride. Preston have a player who just wants to get back on the pitch; the place he has felt at home ever since joining Tottenham Hotspur 22 years ago.
Onomah has been waiting for this opportunity after falling down the pecking order at Craven Cottage, with Fulham signing 14 players on the back of promotion back to the top flight. Not getting to do the thing he loves most for half-a-season has made Onomah hungrier and more determined than ever. Raring to go? You bet.
He hasn’t bothered with social media for a few months in order to focus on his football. And discipline is something Onomah has prided himself on from a very young age, having broken on to the Spurs scene at 17. Being thrust on to the Premier League stage so young was a moment Onomah will never forget – and the years under Mauricio Pochettino which followed were absolutely crucial in his development as a player and person.
Visit: https://t.co/uWTLmR3Jut for more information ans also SCHOLARSHIPS UPDATES..!!!— Reuters Business (@ReutersBusinezz) February 14, 2023
“He was very instrumental – especially living in London, with a lot of distractions as well,” Onomah told LancsLive. “Sometimes, if I did do something wrong, he’d just put his arm around me and speak to me like one of his senior players. I felt like that was important and that he really trusted me. Between a player and manager, I feel trust is important and so yeah, it was just little things like that. I was at Tottenham from eight-years-old and I grew up through the academy. I just enjoyed football and loved it. Breaking through, Pochettino helped me mature from a boy to a man and I’m forever thankful for that. I feel like you’re just an excited young kid who is living the dream. It just feels so surreal and then, bam, you are 25-years-old. It just goes so quickly.”
After a couple of loan spells with Aston Villa and Sheffield Wednesday, fellow London club Fulham swooped in to take Onomah and he would spend the next four years with the Cottagers. Plenty more learning and valuable experience was to come and PNE’s new recruit now feels well equipped to take on the Championship once again, in a different white shirt.
“I learned a lot from my first manager, Scott Parker, and just all of the players, the new manager and people from different walks of life,” added Onomah. “All that knowledge, from ex-pros and senior players, it was very good. About three or four years ago, I started well in the Championship. My first season there, I helped get them promoted and then had a bad injury, which kept me out for a while. The struggles with that kept me out and then, when I was fit, I struggled to get back into the team. I spoke to the new gaffer, Marco Silva, and we just both agreed that – given the stage in my career – it would be good to get some games. I agreed with him, so that is where I’m at now.
“With all the experiences I’ve had before, I feel like I know the league. It’s a very challenging league and I love challenges. I feel like I bring experience and that I can share that with this team. I’ve had two promotions and one play-off final loss. With the positives and negatives of that, I feel like I can definitely help the team. I feel like you’ve just got to go step-by-step, game-by-game and not too far ahead. (It’s) togetherness – having a good team morale off the pitch and a good changing room. And then just believing in yourself really. If you don’t believe in yourself, then who is going to? It has got to come from within, first, I feel.”
Onomah – who is said to have had several other clubs looking to hijack his move to PNE – put pen-to-paper on a short-term deal until the end of the season. While there is no option to extend inserted in the contract, manager Ryan Lowe hopes that Onomah’s time at Deepdale will end up being much longer. For the player, it’s all about letting his football do the talking and then seeing what comes at the end of it.
“I love a challenge and this will definitely be one, with it being a short term deal,” said Onomah. “I just want to prove myself, get back playing and work as hard as I can. I want to just get my head down and focus on that, game-by-game. Me and the gaffer have spoken about long term, but for now it’s just focusing on the season and getting the best out of myself. I see this as a club that can be my home one day. Having the security and feeling at home, it’s very important.”