Preston North End midfielder Paul Gallagher is hoping that a win in the FA Cup at Ipswich Town tomorrow will cap a good few weeks for him both on and off the pitch.
The 29-year-old returned from suspension to feature in all three of PNE’s victories over Christmas, scoring in the 3-2 win over Port Vale on New Year’s Day.
Away from the action, he extended his loan spell from Leicester City until the end of the season and became a dad again – baby son Rocco had his first visit to Deepdale for the Vale game.
Gallagher and his North End colleagues head to Portman Road tomorrow (3pm) looking to cause a cup upset against Mick McCarthy’s Championship outfit.
PNE boast an impressive record on the road this season and the tie against higher-division opposition holds no fear for the visitors.
“We are on a good run at the moment, having taken nine points out of nine over Christmas,” said Gallagher.
“That is credit to the squad because people have come in and done their jobs.
“It is going to be an interesting game at Ipswich – they are doing very well in their league.
“When I played against them for Leicester last season, Ipswich were struggling a bit and their heads were down.
“Mick McCarthy has gone in there and got them playing football.
“They are in the play-off places in the Championship so are obviously a decent side.
“But in our dressing room I think that we have got players who can play in the Championship, no problem.
“We are going there to try and win the game and it would be great to reach the next round and get a big tie.
“Ipswich will give us respect because they will know how well we have been doing in the league.
“We have come back from losing to Brentford by winning three on the bounce.
“Some teams might have gone under after a defeat like that but we have responded in the right manner.
“It will be a tough game but there are always upsets in the FA Cup – hopefully it is us who can cause one.”
On a personal note, it has been a good last few weeks for Gallagher. He is delighted to have signed the loan extension, and becoming a dad again has left him on cloud nine.
Said Gallagher: “Rocco arrived last month so I’ve been on the night shift a few times.
“He went to his first game on Wednesday and I managed to score, which was nice – maybe we will have to bring him along to every game from now on!
“I was pleased to score against Port Vale. I’d hit a hat-trick in the FA Cup but I wanted to get off the mark in the league.
“In the first half I had tried my luck a couple of times – one of the shots went along the ground and hurt 12 worms before going wide.
“With the goal, it just sat up nicely for me and I caught it sweetly. It was good to see it hit the net.”