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Gaffer Expecting Difficult Tie

3 December 2012

Graham Westley says his side will face a different proposition to the one they faced when beating Bury in the League back in early September.

Since then, the Shakers have had a change of manager and a change of a number of playing personnel and therefore, the North End boss is expecting his side to have to work very hard if they are to make progress to the Area semi-finals of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.

“Bury have got one defeat in eight at the moment,” he said. “They have got a new manager, a very experienced man and a nice guy as well and he has established a solidity to their play that was missing previously.

“We’ve been there and won, so we know how to go there and win, but we haven’t won against his team and he will be telling his lads that.

“He has instilled a different ethic in hi team and they are a more competitive outfit now. They are playing okay and we know, full well, that any game gets won or lost on the day. You have to be better than your opposition on the day to win.

“They are one defeat in eight and we are one defeat in nine. We have got four wins, four draws and a defeat in nine now, so we are in good form ourselves and it is up to us to build on what we’ve been doing and I am sure that if we do, we will win.”

North End triumphed 2-1 back at the start of the season at Gigg Lane, thanks to goals from Akpo Sodje and Shane Cansdell-Sherriff’s only goal for the Club so far, but the day was more memorable for the amazing North End following.

Officially there was just under 3,000 North Enders in the ground, having much more than 50 per cent of the announced gate, and the manager paid tribute to the continued support from the terraces.

“In fairness, PNE take over the ground wherever they go, don’t they? It is something about the football club – there is a personality to the fanbase that is used to dominating,” he continued.

“It goes to Carlisle on a Tuesday night in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and we dominated the ground, it went to Bury in the league and we dominated. Wherever we go, the fanbase come and dominate the place.

“They are an exceptional group with a passion for the football club and it spurs myself and the lads on, to know how much passion and desire there is for success.”

This game comes straight off the back of progress into the third round of the FA Cup, with the Lilywhites drawn away at Millwall in January, a game the North End boss is thoroughly looking forward to.

“We’ve got a club for the level above and a club from the level above away from home. They are going well, it is always a tough place to go to. 

“It is a strong club and strong team and a strong manager. I know Kenny well, he’s a terrific bloke – I think we’ve played against each other twice in pre-season, he’s beaten me once and I’ve beaten him once, so we know what to expect from each other. It’s a tough draw, but it’s winnable.

“Last year, in my last game at Stevenage, we got Reading away in the last round and that didn’t look easy on paper. We had to do an exceptional job to go there and win, but we did that and we put ourselves in the fourth round by doing it. It is well within a League One club to go and do the job we have to go and do, but we need to do a very good job.”

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