Doncaster Rovers have rejected a £1.5million bid from Preston North End for Ben Whiteman, Football Insider can reveal.

This site revealed earlier this month the Lilywhites were in pole position to sign the midfielder ahead of their Championship rivals.

A recruitment source has now told Football Insider Preston and QPR are both in hot pursuit of the 24-year-old.

Whiteman was left out of Doncaster’s matchday squad for their FA Cup third-round tie against Blackburn Rovers.

The Doncaster Free Press report the League One outfit took the decision to protect the player whose head has been turned by a possible Championship move.

The official reason given by the club was Whiteman was struggling to shake off the after-effects of a positive coronavirus test.

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

Preston are desperately looking to bolster their midfield ranks this window as they could lose both Daniel Johnson and Ben Pearson this month.

The pair have entered the final six months of their contracts and have rejected new deals on club-record terms of around £17,000-a-week.

The Lilywhites now want to cash in on them both along with defender Ben Davies, another contract rebel.

Preston North End manager

Rangers have been long-standing admirers of attacking midfielder Johnson while Person has attracted the interest of their Glasgow rivals Celtic.

Alex Neil has moved quickly this window already adding midfielder Jayson Molumby, striker Ched Evans and goalkeeper Daniel Iversen all on loan.

In other news, Football Insider can reveal an update on Rangers luring Preston North End midfielder Daniel Johnson to Ibrox after a weekend development.