EXCLUSIVE Tom Bayliss Preston North End column: Hard word on training ground is paying off

It’s disappointing not to play as much as I’d like but I think I’m getting there, slowly but surely.

By Tom Bayliss
Thursday, 3rd December 2020, 5:11 pm

I can see the hard work that I’m putting in on the training ground paying off.

The other lads have been performing so well in that midfield area you’ve got to be patient and when that chance comes, and it will come, you’ve got to take it.

We’ve got some really good players in that area and I’m learning from them every day.

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Battling with Brighton and Hove Albion’s Bernardo during the Carabao Cup third-round tie in September

If I can take little bits out of their game and implement into mine I’m sure I’ll be okay. I’m only 21, I’ve always got time to learn.

I’m learning every day and I’ve come on in the last two games against Watford and Bournemouth.

Any minutes are better than no minutes, at any stage of the game.

It’s just about learning and taking any bits that you can and every time that you come on you just have to try and do well.

I’m also gutted for Patrick Bauer – I sit near him in the changing rooms and we have conversations, he’s a really nice guy.

You don’t really see him go down.

I think we signed in the same summer and ever since I’ve been here he’s never gone down injured, so when he went down we knew it was something serious.

It’s really tough but I’m sure he’ll bounce back and show the character he is.

All the lads at the end of the game were buzzing but it was all bittersweet because we’d lost Pat.

On a personal note, I think the hard work is paying off and I’ll keep working hard and it’s just a case of seeing when the opportunities come. The good thing is that none of us are really the same, in terms of how we are as midfielders.

It gives the manager different options in different games and depending on what he wants from us.

None of us are the exact same player and that’s really good to have in the squad. 

Patience is the key word, there are lots of games coming up and hopefully I can stay fit and healthy and 
then when the chance comes take it.

That’s what I’ll be looking to do.

I’ve always believed in my ability and I do think I’m good enough to play at this level.

I feel like I’m ready to perform when the chance comes my way but at the moment there are lads in my position performing well and you just have to learn off them, wait and be patient.

Ryan Ledson said that he’s been patient and now he’s seeing the fruits of it.

He is a really good player and a really good lad as well, I get on with him very well. He’s doing really well and long may that continue. 

Paul Gallagher has been around for a while – I used to go down to Leicester and watch him play there

I’m a Leicester lad, so I knew about him before I signed.

We are different players, I do like to sit deep and control the play but I’m more of one where instead of hitting long range passes I’ll move with the ball.

I like to dribble with the ball through the pitch and I like to link play that way, whereas Gally likes to open up the pitch a bit more.

I like to carry it from deep and carry it – and the team – further up the pitch, linking play and being creative.