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So, why was Callum Robinson recalled?

Friend of the blog and Preston North End supporter Olly Dawes gave us an insider's look at Aston Villa's Callum Robinson.

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If you listened to this week's 7500 To Holte podcast, you'll have heard Sam Tighe's reference to Olly Dawes and him being 'upset' at Callum Robinson's recall. Upset is probably pushing it, but I sure was annoyed.

Robinson arrived at Preston one month into the season, and his arrival kind of went unnoticed. September 16th, that the very same night that the England U-20 international made the loan switch, North End managed to throw away a 3-0 lead at home to Chesterfield, drawing 3-3.

The torches and pitchforks came out for manager Simon Grayson - a former Villa player himself - and Robinson must have wondered what on earth he'd signed up for.

In fact, there were few fans excited about Robinson's arrival full stop - myself included, I'd never heard of him. A 19-year-old kid wasn't what fans had in mind when Grayson wanted to add support for Joe Garner in attack, but he went on to prove all the doubters wrong.

The first month of his loan deal passed without much to write home about, with a few fleeting substitute appearances where his raw ability impressed Grayson enough to extend the deal until January.

From that moment on, Robinson became a key player for Grayson and Preston, and truly was the support for Garner that North End had been looking for.

After scoring his first goal in the 2-0 win over Leyton Orient (who you may remember as the League One side that dumped Villa out of this year's Capitol One Cup), Robinson hit top form, smashing a hat trick against Havant and Waterlooville in the FA Cup, which led to Villa fans asking why Lambert had even loaned him out in the first place.

Even when Preston were losing, Robinson was the bright spark. Against Bradford, he provided the drive and ambition that North End needed to get back into the game -- taking on two defenders before crossing for Garner to equalise - even though the Bantams went straight down the other end to score a demoralising winner.

Robinson's parting gift was to score the winning goal in the vital top of the table clash with Bristol City, once again finishing off a cross at the back post, as he did a number of times during his loan spell. His movement for his age was simply superb, and League One defenders simply couldn't handle him.

In Grayson's wide 4-2-3-1 system, Robinson only ever played on the left hand side of the attack, making incisive runs to support Garner and get on the end of crosses from right winger Chris Humphrey, which is a role I'd imagine he would play for Villa, just to the left of Christian Benteke.

Now, to the point of me being 'upset' over Robinson's departure. There are a number of factors that play into my frustration that he won't be playing for Preston anymore. First, is the fact that he was playing at a high level for North End; scoring goals, providing assists and developing well. Yet, now he's on the periphery of the Villa side that deploys three players who are strikers in their starting eleven, having not even been on the bench against Crystal Palace.

The second is that his departure just came at the absolute worst time for the club. Earlier that day, Preston fans had found out that Garner - the club's talismanic striker and goal machine - had been ruled out for four months with a knee injury. It's not even that Robinson would have replaced Garner up front, but rather that he offered another goalscoring outlet that the club could have used in his absence, something Kyel Reid, who started against Yeovil last weekend, simply doesn't offer.

And finally, Preston had next to no time to replace him. Just two days later, the loan deadline closed, and Grayson confirmed that Preston had missed out on a number of targets, and only able to snap up Middlesbrough youngster Bradley Fewster, who is unlikely to replicate Robinson's success.

Grayson has already revealed that if Robinson is left out of the Villa side, he will seek to bring the teenager back to Deepdale, but that already looks unlikely, with Championship teams no doubt interested if Paul Lambert does want to loan him out again.

You won't find a Preston fan who has a bad word to say about Robinson from his loan spell here, and it would now be interesting to see whether Lambert would send players to Preston on loan in the future having aided Robinson's development so much this season.

I don't know if Robinson can contribute to Villa's goal-shy attack right now, but he has potential. His movement could cause problems for defenders off the bench, and he has shown the clinical finishing ability that so many at the Birmingham club appear to lack. He's done everything that has been asked of him at Preston, and I just hope he is rewarded with some playing time for Villa over the Christmas period - rather than have him sat on the sidelines until (at least) January.