Sean Gregan’s exclusive column

Preston North End's Daniel Johnson keeps an eye on Brighton & Hove Albion's Solly March
Preston North End's Daniel Johnson keeps an eye on Brighton & Hove Albion's Solly March
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They say that a week is a long time in football but in Preston’s case, five days is a long time with a lot having changed in that short period.

Last weekend, some of the fans were a bit down after the goalless draw with Cardiff.

But Tuesday night’s win at Charlton and a very good draw at the leaders Brighton, have given the club a big lift.

Two tough away games, back to back, have yielded four points, three goals and two clean sheets which is decent going.

While the Cardiff draw was a bit disappointing, that was another clean sheet, so just at the moment, things seem to be heading in the right direction.

The players obviously took a lot of confidence from their win at Charlton.

I don’t care that Charlton are struggling, that was still an excellent away victory.

Paul Gallagher scoring in the first two minutes set the tone. They went on to build from there and by all accounts could have won by a greater margin.

I wrote last week about the need for leadership and it was interesting to see Gallagher given the captaincy.

Different players show their leadership in different ways.

I tackled and shouted when the captain, others lead by example.

Gallagher will be drawing on his experience of playing in the Championship, leading players that way.

I am sure he is a player who others will listen to in the dressing room.

The Charlton victory was followed-up by the draw at Brighton which was a great result and one which many people outside of Preston would not have envisaged.

North End played with a good discipline at the Amex Stadium and you would argue that they could have won it.

What a result that would have been, although I’m sure they were happy enough with the point.

Simon Grayson stuck with the team at Brighton which had won against Charlton.

Even though that meant starting with Joe Garner on the bench, it was the correct decision for me.

Had North End drawn or lost at Charlton, you would have argued for Garner going straight back in.

But the lads did their job in midweek and deserved to start on Saturday.

Garner came off the bench later and came close to scoring on a couple of occasions, so I would not be surprised to see him start against Bolton.

Talking of Bolton, time flies and it is amazing that the last time Preston played them was the 2001 play-off final at the Millennium Stadium.

They beat us that day and won the two league games too, so I think a bit of revenge is on the cards at Deepdale next Saturday.

With Bolton struggling, it is important that North End get the better of them in front of the television cameras.

Meanwhile , the Premier League saw another sacking this weekend as Aston Villa dismissed Tom Sherwood.

With the new television deal kicking-in next season, club owners are desperate to stay in the top flight in order to get their share of the cash.

Sherwood’s record wasn’t that good, and when you’ve got managers like Brendan Rodgers and Nigel Pearson available, there will be the temptation to change.

It could be the right kind of job for David Moyes who isn’t having the best of fortunes in Spain at the moment.

Villa might be the type of club where Moyes could build a squad and mould players like he did here at Preston and at Everton.