Alan Browne is confident that Preston can launch a push for the play-offs this season.
After successive 11th-place finishes in the Championship, PNE will be looking to kick on in 2017/18.
Midfielder Browne is in his fourth year at Deepdale after joining from Cork in January 2014.
Having played his part in North End’s promotion in 2015 and consolidating at this level, he is looking forward to the challenge of this season.
Browne told Cork’s Red FM: “This year we will definitely be looking to improve on last year.
“The play-offs are definitely something to aim for.
“It is a tough league but the play-offs are in our sights.
“We got quite close at one stage last season and with the new additions made to the squad, there is no reason why we can’t push on.”
One of the new additions Browne alludes to is his friend Sean Maguire who will join North End from Cork in the last week of July.
Browne is confident the striker can make an impact at Preston, this his second spell in the English game.
“It is a big move for Sean,” said Browne.
“He has had a taste of the game over here before and knows what it is about.
“It didn’t work out the first time and he went back to Ireland to play for Dundalk.
“Since he joined Cork, it has changed around for him completely and he has done unbelievably well.
“It is a good signing for Preston and Sean will add something extra to the squad.
“I’m really good friends with him and I’ll try and help him settle over here.
“He will find that the boys at Preston are brilliant with new signings, it is a good club to come to.”
Browne, 22, returns for pre-season training having won his first senior cap for the Republic of Ireland.
He came on as a substitute in Ireland’s 3-1 defeat against Mexico in New Jersey at the start of June.