PNE keeper ready to Pick up where he left off

Jordan Pickford will aim for a clean sheet against Fulham
Jordan Pickford will aim for a clean sheet against Fulham
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Preston North End keeper Jordan Pickford is aiming to start another run of clean sheets in Saturday’s visit to Fulham.

Pickford had to pick the ball out of his net twice in the derby defeat to Blackburn last week, bringing to an end six successive shut-outs.

It was unfortunate that the first Rovers goal went in off him, but he has already put that to the back of his mind.

“To keep six clean sheets in a row for Preston was pleasing from both the team’s and my point of view,” Pickford told the Evening Post.

“It was disappointing to concede in the last game because you want runs like that to go on for as long as possible.

“How the goals went in were a bit unfortunate.

“There was nothing I could do for the own goal – it was like a game of pinball in the box and it just hit me on the back.

“The second was a penalty, so it wasn’t exactly a case of us being carved open.

“It’s gone now, the focus in on playing Fulham.

“We had a good couple of days training earlier in the week and the build-up has started for Saturday.

“Fulham will be tough opponents, they have got a decent squad and it is not too long ago that they were in the Premier League.

“I’ve played at Craven Cottage a couple of times for Sunderland Under-21s.

“We will go and be positive and hopefully get back on a good run.

“I know one of the Fulham lads, Cauley Woodrow, from England Under-21s.”

While Pickford is eyeing a return to being watertight at the back, he’s hoping that things can spark at the other end of the pitch.

He was encouraged to see Joe Garner end his barren run in the Blackburn game.

“It is about fine margins in this division and a few more goals could see us push up the league,” said Pickford.

“Joe getting his first goal of the season last week was great and hopefully he will get plenty more.

“I have seen what he is capable of in training sessions and the fans have seen what a good finisher he is over the last couple of seasons.

“It is about getting the right balance in the team – being able to keep things tight at one end, while being more ruthless at the other.

“I’m loving my time here, I’ve played in every game so far and all of those have been a learning curve.

“It is a good group of lads here, tight knit, and we are all pushing in the same direction.”

Meanwhile, the close of the Football League’s loan window later today is set to pass quietly at Deepdale.

It is unlikely that Simon Grayson will attempt to add to his squad, the PNE boss content with the numbers available.

North End already have six players out on loan at other clubs.