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Club News

PNE Still Building

26 October 2013

Manager Simon Grayson takes his side to Meadow Lane this weekend looking to continue to build on his side’s start to the League One campaign.

Sitting in fourth place after 13 games, having only lost once each at home and away sees his team with a platform to build from and the gaffer is looking to continue with another positive result against Chris Kiwomya’s Magpies on Saturday.

Speaking ahead of the trip to the Midlands, the PNE chief said he would not be underestimating the opposition, despite their current league position, with the Crewe game a fortnight ago an example that any side can beat any other in Sky Bet League One.

“We played Crewe who were in the bottom three the other week and they turned us over, so we are not going to underestimate Notts County,” he said.

“We want to build off the two results this week, but they will be a test. They play in a manner where they like to get the ball down, rotate and try and keep the ball and they are desperate for a win. But we want to keep our run going and stay in the top six, at the very least.

“We have always said, if we are on our game, show the right endeavour and attitude and work rate that we can do, with the quality that we’ve got, then we can be a test for anyone.”

A second consecutive Saturday away game means that the Lilywhites must go on the road again, but their game plan remains the same.

“You have to be patient when you play away from home,” continued Grayson. “You have to wait for a foothold in the game, compete and make sure you don’t allow teams to dictate the way of playing. 

“We have to do what we are good at doing, defend properly and then when we get possession of the ball, use it well and create chances and we have done that so far. Our away record has been good this year and we want to try and build on that on Saturday.

“We beat them 1-0 there last season and I thought we controlled the majority of the game and looked very good that night and hopefully that’s the case again on Saturday.

“They have some talented footballers and we will have to be aware of what they are capable of, but ultimately we have to concentrate on our game and do what we are capable of.”

North End complete their first lot of three league games in a week this season at County and therefore the manager’s team selection becomes a little more considered.

“We have looked at the situation and this is our third game in a week. It will have been a tough week, with a lot of travelling involved and we will have to decide whether a number of players can complete three games in a week.

“We have options available if we choose to freshen the team up, but youthful exuberance can also carry you a long way. This is the first time we have had three league games in a week this season and we get a week without a midweek game next week, so whatever team I put out, I hope will be good enough to go and win the game. 

“Whether I pick a 17-year-old, a 25-year-old or a 35-year-old, they should all be fit and ready to provide me with the right options within the team, which it has done so far this season.”

One player he expects to have back available to him very soon is Jack King. The versatile player back in full training with the rest of the squad: “Jack is looking good. He has been back with us since Monday and is looking extremely strong and fit. He has been working hard with the physio and Adrian Lamb and just needs some football time now.

“Our intention is for him to train with us the rest of the week and then hopefully get some game time on Tuesday night against Southport.

“Everything has gone to plan so far. He’s has some challenges, he’s done some shooting – all the things he needs to test his metatarsal out and so far it is going to plan.

“Hopefully we can get him back and up to speed quickly, because he is a good footballer and a good player to have around because of his versatility. He’s a good lad and he is desperate to get back around the team again.”

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