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'Unfinshed Business' For Becks

24 June 2016

North End striker Jermaine Beckford admits there is unfinished business for him going into the new season.

After firing PNE into the Championship with a hattrick in the Play-Off final in 2015, the striker missed the majority of the Lilywhite's first season back in the Championship with a knee injury.

After making his return towards the end of the 2015/16 campaign, the 32-year-old is determined to be back to his best this time around and has high hopes for the new season ahead of the squad's return to pre-season next week.

"I can't wait to be back with the lads. After missing a large chunk of last season, I feel like there's unfinshed business.

"There is unfinished business, and I want to prove to myself that I'm as quick as ever, as strong as ever and as good in front of goal as ever.

"To do that I have to be around the people that helped me the first time around, so that I can get back in it and repay some of the faith that has been placed in me."

On making his return to the side back in March as the season began to draw to a close, Jermaine continued: "It was amazing, it was such a frustrating season for me on a personal level because I have never been out for that period of time before.

"But to see the lads doing as well as they were doing and picking up the results when they needed to it eased the pressure off myself a bit I think.

"I didn't have to put as much pressure on myself to get back sooner but it was frustating that I wasn't able to have more of an impact. I will be looking to put that right this time around.

"I was disappointed that the season finished when it did, obviously it had to but from a personal point of view I was just getting started.

"I had just started to get my match fitness level up, I put the ball in the net and that was a nice feeling and one that I can't wait to get back to.

"Pre-season this year will be as important as any because I was out for as long as I was, it's like a fresh start for me. I feel good, I have no worries, no complaints, no aches and pains, which is a rarity.

"Being off for as long as I was, not only helped to heal my knee, but it also healed a lot of other little niggling injuries that I had as well.

"I feel like I'm coming back in great condition, great shape and I feel good as well."

Despite the off-season break, the squad still work hard while away from Springfields in order to maintain their fitness before getting back to business, and that's no different for the former Everton striker.

"Any professional will tell you that you don't just turn up for pre-season training and then start, you start when the season finishes.

"You take a couple of weeks off to recover and heal any niggling injuries but then we are all professionals and we all want to be on the top of our game.

"We do what we can do to make sure we are in a very good and strong position come the start of pre-season."

The start of the season feels closer following the release of the fixtures on Wednesday, and Becks is feeling confident going into the new season after seeing the 2016/17 schedule.

"I thought they were great for us, don't get me wrong there is no such thing as an easy game but we can come into the new season feeling confident that we can have as good a season as last year.

"There's no game I look for first, I have many favourites. We are going to have derbies, we are going to have teams that I have played for in the past, teams that beat us last season but we are always going to be confident going into the new season.

"I am especially looking forward to the new season having missed so much of last year through injury but I'm sure everyone else is feeling the same way."

There's an added edge to the Champoinship this year with competition as fierce as ever with the likes of Aston Villa and Newcastle United now in the division, and it's something Jermaine and many others are looking forward to.

"Every team that is in this league now deserves to be there, we are all big teams. As big as Newcastle are, as big as Aston Villa are, there are teams that have been in the Championship for a good number of years now who are almost as big as those sides.

"Everyone can and will want to take points off everyone and everyone is looking for a scalp against the bigger teams but I'm sure we will be able to maintain what we did last season and hopefully push on from that as well. Who knows, we might be able to finish higher than we did last season."

Watch Jermaine back in action this season and secure your seat for the 2016/17 campaign. Season tickets are on sale now and full details can be found by clicking here.

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