PNE players in the mood to end miserable run

Jack King is set for a return to a more familiar midfield role
Jack King is set for a return to a more familiar midfield role
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Graham Westley senses Preston North End’s results are about to take a turn for the better as his players are ‘fed up’ with their recent form.

North End will look to put last Sunday’s home defeat to Walsall behind them when they make the long trip to Yeovil tomorrow (3pm).

They go to Somerset on the back of a clear week of training and having done much soul searching in the wake of their recent slide in form.

Westley said: “This week the lads have worked with more determination and self confidence.

“They are fed up with underachieving and we realise it is time to get ourselves fully together and kick on.

“I think this is the right game at the right time for us.

“At the start of the week the players were gutted, demoralised and disappointed after what happened against Walsall.

“But they were also determined to put things right.

“No one wants to be in the situation where you lose games – no one wants to lose home games in that manner.

“When we lose we have to make sure we learn our lessons and have broad shoulders.

“If we’re honest with each other and react in the right way, I’m sure we can build success here.

“If terms of results, I can’t remember having a run like this before as a manager.

“But saying that, I haven’t managed a change of the magnitude we’ve done at Preston.

“With the amount of change, we needed a lot of luck to bring it all together quickly. This week, a lot of people have rung me to say, ‘Stick to your guns, be strong and you’ll get it right’.

“Not that I needed that, but it was nice to hear it.

“I understand the job I’m doing, understand the size of the task and just feel we need a bit of luck to get up and running.

“Fans listen to me and I totally take their point that we are not going to win by making excuses and by pointing at the injuries we’ve had.

“But it’s important to point to the injuries, otherwise people can misunderstand how difficult it has been for the lads.”

Westley will hand Paul Connolly his PNE debut after signing the right-back on loan from Leeds this week.

That gives him the option of moving Jack King forward into midfield after the player filled in at right-back recently.

North End made an early start for the South West today due to the snow being forecast. It is an 
all-seated affair for the PNE fans who make the trip, as the uncovered away terrace at Huish Park has been declared unfit to use because of the weather.

Meanwhile, goalkeeper Steve Simonsen has left Deepdale after having his contract settled up. Signed on a 12-month deal in August, Simonsen has made 17 appearances for PNE.

The last of those came in the Coventry defeat when he injured his knee in the closing stages.