Boss Alex Neil is confident Preston have the right formula to succeed

Preston North End manager Alex Neil
Preston North End manager Alex Neil

Alex Neil says the challenge of mounting a promotion push in the way Preston are is one he finds enjoyable and would be extremely rewarding should it come off.

It’s been a steady build at Deepdale both in Neil’s time with North End and before that, with careful investment rather than throwing a ‘pot of gold’ at it.

Different clubs have gone down varying routes to try and reach the Premier League.

Huddersfield, who PNE host at Deepdale on Saturday, lent quite heavily on the loan market to get to the top flight.

Others have invested vast amounts in recruitment and that doesn’t always pay off.

Neil says there is no right way or wrong way, no perfect formula to get up.

But he thinks Preston’s way of doing things can eventually pay dividends.

Neil said: “When you look at when Huddersfield were promoted, they had a lot of loans – I think they had up to six good loans that season.

“They had Elias Kachunga, there was the goalkeeper from Liverpool.

“Huddersfield went up on the back of having those good loans from other clubs.

“If you look at the manner we are trying to do things, it is different and a hell of a lot more difficult. However, it’s not impossible.

“If you had to do it with less money than most of the teams in the division, with a younger squad than most, and with guys who we have recruited, nurtured, brought through and developed, it is more difficult than getting £60m and buying those who you think might do a job.

“The one thing about it, is that it is a better process here.

“It is one of those when you are invested in it for a longer period of time, it is a project to a certain extent.

“The satisfaction of if and when we do get there will be really something special, very rewarding.

“What you tend to do as a manager too is build more connections with your players than you would do if you have just got a big pot of gold.

“That is the togetherness this sort of environment can create because they are all from similar backgrounds.

“As a player, I was from a very similar background to a lot of the lads here.

“I came from lower levels and managed to play in the Championship and SPL, but I had to work my way to get to that point.”

Neil thinks that North End continuing with the same model will be beneficial.

“It would be negligent for us to scrap what we have been doing and go down a different path because we are doing well at the moment,” said Neil.

“We will continue to do what we are doing.

“The boundaries for this club have been pushed each year, pushed at a pace.”