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First Team News

Earl Remaining Grounded After Dream Debut

21 August 2017

Josh Earl will be keeping his feet firmly on the ground after making his professional debut for the club at the weekend.

After signing his first prfoessional contract in the summer, the 18-year-old impressed throughout pre-season and was selected as the replacement for the injured Greg Cunningham for the Championship clash with Reading at Deepdale.

Despite admitting it was a dream come true to pull on the shirt for the first team, the Academy graduate knows this is just the start.

"I've been here since I was nine-years-old and I remember signing my first contract so it's a very special moment making my way up. I've seen lots of players who haven't got contracts and not carried on so it's just a special moment to make it to what I've been dreaming of for the last ten years or so.

"It's not like I've made it or anything though, I just need to focus on it game by game just to keep my shirt, do the best I can with every chance that I get.

It wasn't until the day of the game that Earl knew for certain that he would feature in the side, and admitted it was a mixture of nerves and excitement for him in the build up to the game.

"The manager gave me an idea on Friday but I found out for sure on Saturday morning before the game. After training on Friday I was quite nervous and I couldn't stop thinking about whether I was going to play or not but I'm glad that I made my debut and I really enjoyed it.

"I kept it to myself, I didn't want anyone else worrying for me, when I found out on Saturday it was good but I didn't sleep very much on Friday night, I just couldn't stop thinking about it.

"I didn't expect this at the end of last season when I got offered my professional contract. From being offered my professional contract to playing is a big step and I'm happy that I've made it and it couldn't have gone any better.

After an impressive debut, Earl received plaudits from teammates and fans alike, as well as praise from PNE boss Alex Neil.

On the comments after the game, Josh was delighted and feels there are exciting things to come from the young team at Deepdale.

"It's really nice to hear comments like that, especially from the gaffer because he's picking the team, so I just need to keep on showing him and showing the fans that I can do it and I am capable and I am ready for this.

"I just need to do my best and take it game by game and just keep on pushing.

"I feel as though we have such a good group of lads and all of us are really talented and I think we've got a bright future."

Hear more from Josh on iFollow now by clicking on the video above where he also discusses the support of those in the club's Academy set up and the backing from his family.


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