Rochdale have continued their business in the January Transfer Window with the news that Joe Rafferty has left the club and joined Championship side Preston North End.
The 25-year old has signed a three-and-a-half-year deal at Deepdale for an undisclosed fee.
Rafferty leaves Rochdale after over six-years at the club, having arrived at the Crown Oil Arena in the summer of 2012 from Liverpool.
He made over 250 appearances for the club during that spell.
Speaking to Preston North End’s official website, Rafferty said: ““Once I knew there was interest from Preston North End, I couldn’t wait to get the deal over the line; this is a massive club,”
“I have been at Rochdale for six years, played a lot of games and I think I can bring some experience into the club. I had a good chat with the manager and he came across very well. I understand what he wants, and I hope I can do well for him and the club.”
💙 We’d like thank Joe for his contribution & commitment to the Dale cause over the years & wish him the very best of luck in his new challenge. Good luck in the Championship, @JoeRafferty5! Thanks for the memories #RAFC— Rochdale AFC (@officiallydale) January 23, 2019
His new manager, Alex Neil, added: “Joe is flexible. He played left back and right back in his last game! He is a really good character, with good qualities – he will get up and down the pitch – and he will add good competition in that area.
“I think it will be a really good challenge to Joe, to come up and show was he can do and it is a challenge he should relish. He has been at big club, took a step back to play games and hopefully now he is ready to kick on and show his abilities at a higher level and we are very hopeful he can go on and do well.”