Declan Rudd believes that North End should have confidence in their own abilities ahead of Tuesday night’s match with Port Vale despite the hosts’ rich vein of current form.
After another win at the weekend, the Valiants have continued were they left off last season in gaining promotion to Sky Bet League One, but Rudd believes that this impress run should mean nothing to him and his team-mates who are undefeated in seven themselves.
Speaking exclusively to PNE.Com, Rudd said: “Port Vale have won five of their last six games and they seem like they are flying.
“They are newly promoted from last season so they still have their tails up, but on our day we are capable of taking on any team, whether they have won five of their last six or lost five of their last six, it shouldn’t make a difference to us.
“We should be going into games thinking that we can take three points from anyone and if we put a performance in like we did on Saturday and create the chances like we did, I’m sure we will be fine.
“We just need to stay switched on and make sure we do our jobs right at the back as well.
“We have been brilliant away from home and I think at home it has been tough for us because teams come and park the bus, they suck up all the pressure and they have one chance a game and unfortunately for us they have been taking that chance recently.
“Away from home we have been getting good results and playing well so hopefully we can carry that on.
“It is very important to take points off teams when you do play away from home in this league, because every team you play is difficult and whether we are going to Port Vale or Wolves, every game is just as hard as each other.
“We need to just concentrate on our game and do what we have been doing recently.”
The PNE custodian has been in superb form himself this season, keeping five cleansheets on the road.
However the No.23 is modest enough to let the players in front of him take most of the credit, despite making some crucial saves for the cause along the way.
He added: “I have been pleased with my own performances although I didn’t have anything to do on Saturday!
“I am happy, but the team in front of me have been unbelievable the last few games, especially at Leyton Orient, they put their bodies on the line and they defended everything that was chucked at them.
“Jack King has come in the last two games and has been unbelievable; you would never know he was out for so long.
“He has come straight in like he hasn’t missed a day’s training and obviously Bailey Wright has been his usual self, just stopping everything from getting through and everyone else has been doing their work as well.
“The team in front of me has been brilliant and I have not had much to do to be honest but that’s how I like it.
“If I don’t have nothing to do, it means I have had a good game so hopefully it can continue in that way.”
Saturday was one of the most bizarre matches to be played at Deepdale in a long time, with the hosts battering Colchester United from pillar to post only to come away with a solitary point to make it three draws in a row at home.
But Rudd says confidence is not affected by such an afternoon, and is using Tuesday’s match as a chance to rectify that wrong.
“Saturday was a one off I think,” continued Rudd.
“The performance was there and we showed how good we are attacking and how good we are defensively.
“We got the ball wide, got the crosses in, got our shots off and unfortunately for us their ‘keeper had a good game and luck just wasn’t with is that day.
“I think I touched the ball about five times, it was a strange day, but at the end of it we came away with one point and we are still unbeaten in seven games.”
“We are still full of confidence; after Saturday’s game we were just as disappointed as anyone else, if not more.
“It was a big opportunity for us and we could have went fourth, but it is a marathon not a sprint this season and a point is valuable, any point in this league is valuable.
“On another day we would have won by five or six goals, but we didn’t, so it makes Tuesday’s game even more important for us to go out there and get the three points.”