Doncaster Rovers line up loan for Republic of Ireland defender.

Andy Boyle
Andy Boyle

Doncaster Rovers have agreed a loan move for Preston North End defender Andy Boyle, we understand.

Rovers are expected to confirm the signing of the 26-year-old on Tuesday as they look to plug some of the gap left by the injuries to centre half trio Andy Butler, Mathieu Baudry and Joe Wright.

Republic of Ireland international Boyle had been expected to join League One rivals Walsall on loan from Preston but is instead headed to the Keepmoat for the rest of the season. Table-topping Wigan Athletic had also been linked with a move for him at the start of the month.

Boyle joined North End a year ago from Dundalk along with winger Daryl Horgan.

Both men played a key role in Dundalk’s incredible run in the Europa League in the 2016/17 season which saw them reach the group stages, as well as three League of Ireland titles. He made his debut for the national team last March against Iceland.

While Horgan has become a regular in Preston’s matchday squads, Boyle has found game time much harder to come by.

In his first half season with the club he managed seven appearances after waiting almost two months for his debut.

He has added to that five appearances this season, mainly when the club has struggled with injuries.

Boyle comes in as Darren Ferguson hunts for two centre halves following injuries to Rovers’ three senior central defenders.

Butler is out for at least six weeks with knee ligament damage, Baudry will miss the next month with a hamstring problem while Wright suffered broken ribs during Saturday’s defeat to Bristol Rovers.

Former Rovers loanee Harry Toffolo has joined Millwall on a short term contract after leaving Norwich City.

The left back made 17 appearances for Rovers during the first half of the season before breaking his foot.