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Simon Grayson Targets 2014/15 Promotion Party For Preston North End

29 May 2014

Simon Grayson hopes Preston North End fans will be enjoying a promotion party this time next year and has outlined his summer plans for the Club.

The Lilywhites watched on as Brentford, Crewe Alexandra and Rotherham United supporters stormed their respective pitches in celebration of promotion, safety or Play-Off joy in the final few weeks of the season.

Preston boss Grayson admits seeing first-hand the success of the Club’s opponents has been tough but insists his players must use the experience as motivation for next season.

"I am sick of the sight of other teams celebrating success,” he told PNE.Com in an exclusive interview.

"Hopefully this time next year we will be celebrating, it will be our fans running onto the pitch celebrating.
 
"That's what you've got to do, you've got to use it as motivation and inspiration that you can reflect.

"I want the players to go away and try and switch off for the next couple of weeks and shut their bodies down because it has been a really demanding season.

"To be coming in every day like they have done, when you look back nearly every player has been available for match selection which speaks volumes of the way they've worked in the gym, with the physio, on the training pitch.

"That takes a lot out of you, physically and mentally, so they need to shut their bodies down, they've then been given programmes to do ready for pre-season when they come back on 3rd July.

"We will go again for another gruelling campaign but a successful one hopefully, because that's what this football club deserves."

North End’s Play-Off semi-final loss to Rotherham means they will compete in Sky Bet League One again next season.

And while Grayson concedes there is certainly still a sense of disappointment, he believes that - once wounds have healed - the Club can reflect on the 2013/14 campaign fondly.

"The players are hugely disappointed still, as we all are,” he said.

"It's a quiet dressing room, we had a meeting and a chat this morning [the Friday following the loss].

"Obviously all the supporters will still be reflecting back on a disappointing night.

"But when you see the overall picture, and I said this to the players, that 15 or 16 months ago they were down on their knees for many different reasons.

"Now they're down on their knees a little bit because they have lost in the Play-Off semi-final.

"That shows how far we've come as a football club, how far we've come with the squad we've got and they can be proud of what they've achieved this year.

"Yes, we're disappointed that we've lost and not got to Wembley and ultimately the Championship.

"But to have come to where we have got to and what we have done in moving this fantastic football club forward can only speak volumes for what we've done and what the future holds for everybody."

The summer transfer window offers Grayson the chance to add to his current squad of players but the Preston boss does not believe an overhaul is needed and has told of his wish to tie down a few of the Club’s 2013/14 loanees for at least another season.

"The big thing that we have got in our favour is that we have got a lot of players under contract,” he said.

"I said, even if we were in the Championship, I wouldn't need to do a lot of rebuilding because I think there is a good nucleus of the squad here.

"But what you always have to do is improve every season, every pre-season you need new players in to keep pushing the squad and not rest on your laurels of what's happened in the past.

"I want to resign Neil Kilkenny, I want to resign Paul Gallagher and I'd love to do something with Declan Rudd.

"Time will tell on those situations but the one thing we have got in our favour is that those three players have thoroughly enjoyed their time here.

"They've been absolutely adored by the supporters, they've contributed to a fantastic season so we will be going a long way to trying to secure the contracts of those three players at the very least."

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