Summer signing Jack King is looking to make an impact at PNE following his summer move from Woking.
King was watched by a fantastic away following at Haig Avenue and he admits that the whole squad had been impressed by the travelling support: “It was a superb crowd at Southport; the majority of them were Preston fans,” he continued. “It is always good to go away from home and have support like that. It is nice to hear the crowd and with that kind of support it’s obvious that it’s a massive club with a big following and it was really appreciated.
“I also like to try and score goals; although that’s a little more difficult from centre half or right back, but wherever you go on the pitch it is important you try and keep the ball and I try and pride myself on that and whatever position I am in, I try to affect the game. If I’m in midfield I try to get forward and score some goals and if I’m playing at centre back my aim is to try and keep a clean sheet and that was achieved on Saturday, so I was pleased with that.”
“Midfield is my regular position, but saying that, wherever the manager asks me to play, I will play. Pre-season is about experimenting and if he wants me to play centre half I will play there and if he wants me to play right back, I’ll play there too. It is just about trying things out and also Robbo [Chris Robertson] is out injured and John Welsh came off too, so it is just about taking your chance and I thought I did okay.
Speaking to PNE.Com after the game King was delighted to get his PNE career underway: “Everyone wants to be playing games and it is nice to get the game under our belts,” he said. “It’s good to get a little bit of fitness. We’ve been training hard for the first two weeks, so it is good to get the games underway and I’m looking forward to another game on Tuesday.
The former Farnborough man is a goalscoring midfielder with energy to get box-to-box , but as he displayed in the game at Southport, he can also operate across the backline, playing the first half in the centre of defence and half of the second period at right back following the early departure of John Welsh after an ankle knock.
The 26-year-old midfielder, who played a major part in Woking’s Blue Square South title triumph in 2011/12, agreed a one-year contract at Deepdale with an option for a second year during the off season.
“It’s a great set of lads and we have gelled really quickly. I’ve been a in a lot of dressing rooms where it has been quite cliquey, but it is one big group here.
King is one of a dozen summer recruits and looking round the dressing room could have been an intimidating place for all the new boys, but he told the official website that it has been very easy to settle in.
“It’s a lot different being full-time, but at the same time I feel fitter than I have been before. It is going to take time to get match fitness, but that will come and I am looking forward to carrying on with training right through to the start of the season.”
“I feel fitter even after just 12 days. It makes a difference to be training every day. Through the week you are always gearing up to play that game on the Saturday, whereas when you are not full-time maybe the first time you think about the game is on the Saturday morning, but now the preparation is right from the word go, from the Monday morning right through until just before kick-off.
“It is hard work, but I wouldn’t change it for the world! I look forward to going into training every day and it wouldn’t bother me if we started at six in the morning and went until six at night, it’s a great job and we are in a privileged position and I’m pleased to be playing for a club where everything is set up to go in the right direction.
King’s move to Deepdale sees him move to full-time training, something he admits has been a dream come true: “I’m enjoying it. From when you are a young kid it is obviously everyone’s dream to be a full-time professional footballer and now I have realised that dream.