Safety is primary target – Lough

Preston Grasshoppers Coach, Michael Lough
Preston Grasshoppers Coach, Michael Lough
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Many a New Year’s resolution will have been made this week.

And head coach Michael Lough revealed Preston Grasshoppers’ target will be to secure their league status as soon as possible, starting tomorrow against Chester.

After a break in proceedings over the festive period, Hoppers return to SSE National League Two North action this week looking to bring an end to a difficult run that has seen them lose four on the bounce. Alarm bells are not ringing just yet however, with the side still comfortably mid-table in seventh spot, two places below tomorrow’s opponents Chester.

But with 20 points fewer than the top four teams, Lough concedes they have to prioritise securing their survival this season before then looking to push on.

“We are definitely looking to get back to winning ways this weekend, we need to start getting a few wins under our belts this next month,” he said. “If we can have a strong month that should help secure safety for us for next season.

“The target at the moment for the team is to do that, I can’t see us rivalling the top four at the moment and going for the promotion places.

“Our target is to get safety and then build from there, carrying out the preparations for next season.

“We just need to get that confidence back in the team, it will do us the world of good if we can start getting back to winning ways.”

After two successive away games to end 2013, Lough’s men return to the home comforts of Lightfoot Green tomorrow.

Chester ran out comfortable 26-5 winners when they met in the reverse game earlier this season, with Mo Mustafa’s try Preston’s only score.

But with his side getting a chance to recharge over the break, Lough is eyeing up a win this time around.

“I think when we played them last time we were not at full strength and they 
played particularly well,” he said.

“I hope it will be a chance to turn the tables on them but they are a good side.

“The guys needed the break over Christmas, but they are refreshed and raring to go out there and put in a good game.”

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