PNE boss learns lesson

Go easy: Graham Westley admits he worked players a bit too hard
Go easy: Graham Westley admits he worked players a bit too hard
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Graham Westley admits to having had a re-think about Preston North End’s preparation for this weekend’s clash with Brentford.

The Deepdale boss says he cast his mind back to the last time North End had a clear midweek in the build-up to a game.

That came before the 
FA Cup tie against Yeovil earlier in the month, and although PNE triumphed 3-0, the performance didn’t hit great heights.

Westley told the Evening Post: “We didn’t play very well against Yeovil and you’ve got to live and learn.

“Possibly we worked a little bit too hard that week and maybe that affected the performance.

“It could be that we actually benefited more from that week’s work in the following game against Stevenage.

“When you put in the hard graft, you don’t necessarily see the benefits immediately.

“I had a think about that when planning this week’s training schedule and the work we needed to do.

“What we want to do is build on the win at Stevenage.

“That result was a big step forward for us.

“I keep saying the team is growing its performance and that does take some time to achieve.

“We all want to go from nought to a hundred in six seconds but we know things don’t happen that way.

“Last week we saw some good stuff and we want to carry that forward.”

North End’s meeting with Brentford at Deepdale on Saturday sees a clash between two sides both unbeaten in their last five games.

The Bees come to Lancashire two places and two points better off than PNE. Westley will be keeping an eye on Jeffrey Monakana’s 
fitness over the next couple of days.

The 19-year-old winger was stretchered off late in the Stevenage game after taking a heavy knock to his lower leg.

After playing such a prominent part in the 4-1 win at Broadhall Way, the North End boss will be keen to have him available.

When it comes to getting players back in contention after injury, Westley has backed the club’s summer expenditure on fitness equipment, which he says has already been of huge benefit.

“I recommended to the club that we invest in some new equipment,” said Westley.

“The equipment is about helping players’ power base and retaining fitness when they are sat in the treatment room.

“We changed round the facilities we can offer to the players when they’re out injured.

“You reap what you sow, and the club paid for the right kit. That kit has made a big difference.

“Look at how Lee Holmes has come back into the team. He was out for a number of weeks but managed to keep himself right during that time and keep a good level of fitness.

“Within quite a short time of starting training after the injury, Lee was able to play in the first team.”

Paul Huntington is back in contention for the Brentford game, the centre-half having missed the Stevenage win because of a one-match suspension.