PNE can Reach for the stars

Adam Reach says a '˜big' April could keep Preston North End in contention for the play-offs.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 24th March 2016, 5:00 am
Adam Reach says PNE can take big strides next month
Adam Reach says PNE can take big strides next month

The Lilywhites have seven games next month, facing sides at both ends of the table.

They resume action a week on Saturday at Blackburn with a nine-point deficit to claw back on sixth place.

Although it would take a big swing of results, the on-loan Reach is adopting a never-say-never approach.

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“There are a lot of games in April and a lot of points to be played for,” Reach told the Evening Post.

“If we were to put a run of wins together, we could well end up closer to the play-offs than we are now.

“While we only played four games in March, there are seven squashed into April.

“We’ve got Blackburn, we go to Middlesbrough and there is the Burnley game which is now on television.

“Hopefully we can start off the month well at Blackburn and build from there.

“We will be fully focused on all the games and are determined to put a run of good results together.

“The Middlesbrough game is one I won’t be able to play in as I’m on loan from them.

“An ideal scenario for me would be for Boro to go up automatically and us to get into the play-offs.”

The derby at Blackburn is followed by Fulham’s visit to Deepdale on April 5.

PNE head to Teesside four days later to face Boro, then host relegation-threatened MK Dons the following week.

They have a Tuesday night trip to Birmingham on April 19, before Burnley visit for a televised Friday night clash, which is certain to attract a bumper crowd.

The month is rounded off with a visit to Reading.

Reach believes the current international break has come at a good time for him.

North End have stayed in training this week but will get time off over Easter to help recharge the batteries.

Said Reach: “These breaks work in different ways, some players like to keep playing, others don’t.

“Personally, I think the break is good, it will help get the energy levels back up.

“Not having a game for two weeks allows us to get a few days’ rest but still do plenty of work on the training ground ready to play Blackburn.”

PNE signed off for the break with the 1-1 draw against Queens Park Rangers.

Reach felt it was a point they deserved, having chased the game from the fifth minute when the visitors went ahead.

The 23-year-old said: “It was hard to break them down, I thought QPR set up well after they scored.

“We kept banging on the door and it was great when we got the equaliser.

“It was a great ball in from Greg Cunningham and Eoin Doyle finished it very well.

“That is two in two for Eoin after his goal at Bolton.

“It was also nice to have Jermaine Beckford back in the squad – he is a quality player.

“He has got this break now to work on his sharpness ahead of the Blackburn game.”