Frankie McAvoy on why he has taken on the role of Preston North End interim head coach

Frankie McAvoy says he did not dive in and straight away accept the offer to become Preston’s interim head coach after Alex Neil’s exit.

By Dave Seddon
Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 8:00 am

McAvoy felt taking over from his long-time friend and colleague meant he had to give it proper thought – not make a snap judgement.

What the Scotsman had to factor in too, was soon after being offered the interim role, he was off to have his Covid-19 vaccination.

With the jab received in his arm, McAvoy gave the situation plenty of thought and came to the conclusion it was right to take the role.

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PNE interim head coach Frankie McAvoy

He is now gearing up for his first game in charge against former club Norwich City at Deepdale a week on Friday.

McAvoy told the Lancashire Post: “There was a lot to take in on Sunday.

“I think it was just after 1pm when things started happening. Alex had spoken to me and then I got the call off Peter Ridsdale.

“My wife and myself were due to get our Covid jabs at the St John’s Centre in Preston at 3pm that afternoon.

“So it was literally a case of coming in to speak to Peter and then going away to get my jab done.

“I had a lot to think about which I did and took my time over. I spoke to the people who are close to me, letting them know the situation.

“I was listening to the advice which was coming and I thought this was a great chance and opportunity, let’s give it a right go.

“I’m not going to say I made a decision straight away, that wasn’t the case.

“Alex is a great friend and a great mentor who had just lost his job, so I had to think of him.

“You go through a lot of different types of emotions when things like this happen.

“As the day progressed I started to look at the position I was in and I just thought it was a great chance, an opportunity to take these eight games and see how we go.”

McAvoy oversaw training for the first time yesterday, before which he had a meeting with the squad about how the last few days had unfolded.

The 53-year-old says his focus is fixed on the eight remaining games of the season and getting the points needed to ensure safety.

Whether he wants the job on a longer-term basis, he has not given any thought to.

Said McAvoy: “I see myself in the position of being asked to step in and take Preston forward in the remaining eight games, to do the best we possibly can, do the best for the players.

“We want to put a team out on the pitch which will give everything it has got to try and win the game.

“Wherever that takes us, we will see on May 8.

“The hard work has started, we had a good training session on the pitch.”

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