Players’ graft is key to PNE’s recent good form says Alex Neil

Daniel Johnson returned to the side for the win over Sheffield United on Saturday
Daniel Johnson returned to the side for the win over Sheffield United on Saturday

Alex Neil believes Preston’s recent upturn in form is just rewards for his side’s hard work.

After four straight defeats as injuries hit hard at the back, North End have rebounded in style since the last international break and are now six games unbeaten, four of those being victories.

The latest of those was a 1-0 win over Sheffield United on Saturday, Neil changing system three times throughout the course of the 90 minutes.

While the PNE boss saw his tactics come off, he is keen to praise the efforts of his players in recent weeks.

Since taking over from Simon Grayson in July, the Scot has regularly said how much he is enjoying working with an emerging Lilywhites squad and that shows no sign of changing.

“It’s been a good spell for us,” said Neil, whose side 
welcome Nottingham Forest to Deepdale on Saturday.

“We’ve played well and worked really hard.

“We’ve come up against a lot of different challenges in those three games.

“The substitutes have been vitally important, which shows how important the squad is for us.

“On Saturday Daniel Johnson came back into the team as well so we’re delighted with what we’ve done.

“I’m really pleased for the lads.

“Everybody doesn’t see how hard they work every day and they’ve been an absolute joy to work with.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time here so far and I’m thrilled to be working with them.”