Alan Browne expects stronger squad to give Preston North End an upturn in form

Alan Browne returned to Preston's starting XI against Swansea following injury
Alan Browne returned to Preston's starting XI against Swansea following injury

Alan Browne hopes Preston can have a strong finish to the season now that their squad has been bolstered.

PNE boss Alex Neil was able to select his strongest side – and bench – for weeks in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Swansea.

Browne was one of those who returned to the starting XI after hamstring trouble.

Sharing the spoils with Swansea kept the Lilywhites seven points clear of the drop zone although they did slip a place to 18th in the table.

Looking the other way, there is a 13-point gap between themselves and sixth place.

Reflecting on the season to date, Browne said: “It’s hard to sum it up really.

“We have had a lot of disappointments but we did put a good run together.

“Other than that there’s not been much from us really.

“Going into the new year now we just need to win as many games as we can and see where that takes us.

“We haven’t got any objectives as such for the rest of the season but we want to win every game and we’ll do everything we can.

“With the squad we’ve got now and still more players to come back we’ll have a really strong finish to the season. It’s coming together now.”

The side against Swansea included new signings Brad Potts and Jayden Stockley.

Connor Ripley was on the bench, while Josh Ginnelly did not make the squad.

Said Browne: “The new boys have looked really good in training.

“It’s really difficult to go straight in and get used to the style of play the gaffer wants but I think they were really good against Swansea.

“The gaffer doesn’t sign similar players and they all offer something different.

“They give us something we’ve needed and hopefully they’ll settle in well now.”

Browne, 23, missed the games against Aston Villa and Rotherham United with a tight hamstring.

Named as a substitute for the FA Cup tie with Doncaster, he came off the bench at the start of the second half.

By his own admission, the Irishman is not yet firing on all cylinders.

“ I still didn’t feel 100 per cent but I tried to give everything,” said Browne.

“Over the next few weeks we don’t have any Tuesday games and that should help.

“I’ll be looking to get back to full fitness and hopefully get back to my best.

“With the circumstances and the amount of injuries we’ve had I felt like I needed to get back.

“You saw the bench against Aston Villa, it was full of young lads and two of them made their debut.

“It’s fantastic for them and the club but from our 
perspective it’s disappointing to have that many players out injured.”