Ben Davies has expressed his joy at signing his first professional contract with PNE, but insists he cannot rest on his laurels in his push for a place in Simon Grayson’s starting XI next season.
The 17-year-old put pen to paper on a one-year deal with the Club on Monday after an impressive stint with the first team towards the end of 2012/13 season.
And the former youth team player has revealed just how pleased he is to have signed for the Lilywhites.
“It’s a great feeling to finally get the professional contract,” he said.
“We’ve obviously been trying for years to get to this moment, so we’re going to enjoy it and then we’ll kick on.”
However, the defender is adamant he won’t simply settle for a place on the fringes of the manager’s plans and intends to make the most of his chance to shine.
“Now we’ve got it we really have to kick on because there is no point in just having a one year contract, we want a career in it,” he added.
“I’ve already played a few games so I’ve got to kick on and try to get in the first team squad.
“I need to come back strongly in pre-season and look to play as many games as I can really.”
One way Davies is confident he can emerge as a key player for North End is to follow in the footsteps of fellow youth team graduate, Will Hayhurst.
The 19-year-old winger enjoyed an impressive debut season with the senior squad and Davies is hoping he can emulate his teammates’ success.
“He’s done really well this year, especially in the second half,” he continued
“If I can get anywhere near as well as he’s done then I’ll be pleased with myself.”
Meanwhile, the Barrow-born centre half is pleased with the backing he has received from players and coaching staff as he prepares to make a positive impression in the upcoming pre-season.
“I’ve been encouraged a lot by all the players and the gaffer,” Davies said.
“He’s said that I need to come back stronger and ready to play after pre-season and look to start games.”
With three senior matches under his belt, Davies has already experienced the PNE first team initiation process which sees new recruits having to sing in front of the entire squad.
And the defender is looking forward to putting fellow youth team graduates Ryan Croasdale and Steven James through the embarrassment.
“Ryan likes a bit of One Direction and Steve could do some One Direction too. I did a bit of Paolo Nutini, that’s more me,” he joked.
“They’ll be fine, it’s a great laugh.”