Big season ahead for Preston North End winger Scott Sinclair after settling-in spell
Scott Sinclair is determined to produce his best for Preston North End this season after a stop-start opening spell at Deepdale.
Sinclair’s move from Celtic in January produced a great deal of excitement among the PNE faithful but he is yet to shine on a consistent basis.
His 11 starts and seven appearances from the bench produced three goals – two of them after the return from lockdown.
There have been promising signs from the 31-year-old in pre-season.
He was in particularly good form against Sheffield United on Friday, hitting the post with a shot after a run from his own half had carried him through the Blades’ defence.
Sinclair admits moving clubs part-way through the season brings its challenges.
However, with his family now settled off the pitch, he can focus fully on it.
“I definitely want to push on again and I think I will,” said Sinclair.
“Sometimes it is hard to come to a club in January because you are halfway through the season.
“But I have been here long enough now to push on and get better and better.
“I’ve enjoyed coming here, it took me a bit of time to get settled with the house but that is sorted now.
“When you move clubs and are living in a hotel, especially when you’ve got kids, things like that are a factor.”
Sinclair’s former club Swansea are at Deepdale on Saturday to provide the Lilywhites’ opposition for the opening Championship game of the 2020/21 season.
He helped fire the South Wales outfit to the Premier League in 2011, scoring 27 goals – including a hat-trick in the play-off final.
In February, his first PNE goal came against the Swans.
There will have been just seven-and-a-half weeks between the end of last season and the start of this.
Said Sinclair: “I’m feeling ready, I’m feeling fit.
“The best thing is that we didn’t lose much fitness as the summer break was so short.
“We only had three weeks or so off and in that time we kept ticking over.
“Everything has been squeezed, both the break and the pre-season, and we’ve had to adapt to that.
“We’ve had a good pre-season, worked hard and played against some good teams.
“I played in the Sheffield United game on Friday and that was a good test for us.
“We’ve played well against the three Premier League teams and that is the standard we set ourselves.
“I hit the post in that game after a good run – I kept on going, the ball was bubbling about and tumbling off me.
“Really I should be putting those chances away.”