Ben Pearson has hailed the team spirit in the PNE squad ahead of the trip to Middlesbrough on Saturday.
Middlesbrough are one of the biggest spenders in the Championship this season but Pearson feels money cannot buy the spirit that can drive teams on.
Despite the money that has been spent in the transfer window this summer, Pearson is under no illusions as to the quality of his teammates but also accredits the influence that the team spirit has had on performances.
Speaking to iFollow PNE, Ben said: “If you look at our side, certainly within the squad, everyone understands how good we are. If you look at teams on paper, we’d back ourselves against most.
“Even without taking money into consideration it’s about believing in our ability because we are good enough and if we continue playing as we are - and we keep all players fit - then we’ve got a really good chance of doing something this year.
“That’s been massive for us over that past couple of years, people think that we’re just a team about spirit but the quality in the side is very good. If you look at the bids we’ve had for players and interest in players it shows that people are starting to take notice.
“We’ve just got to keep doing what we’re doing and keep going under the radar because I really do think we’ve got a great chance this year.”
North End were dealt a very challenging start to the season but have demonstrated their quality in the contests and Pearson has been pleased with the solid start both the club has made and himself.
“It’s been a solid start, given the first four games we’d have taken the amount of points that we’ve got – especially with the performances.
“I’ve started well, this pre-season is the best I’ve felt for a long time. It’s been good for myself personally until now barring the sending off but as long as I keep performing as I can do – and the team does too – we’ll do well.”
Ben is looking to improve on his disciplinary record but feels that his competitive nature may have caused him to have a bit of a reputation in the game, which he is keen to prove wrong.
“My aim was to not miss so many games through suspension and it hasn’t gone that way up until now. I think my reputation is probably getting the better of me, especially on Saturday, it was my first tackle and he’s booked me straight away for what I thought was a decent tackle.
“It’s my biggest problem, getting refs on side is what I need to be doing but as for tackling I think they’ve been OK.”
Alex Neil’s new style at Deepdale has seen Pearson become the architect of North End’s passing play and it’s a role that the midfielder has relished, using his ability to read a game to perfection.
“I’m really enjoying it. The gaffer has given me a lot of information of what I need to be doing game by game so it’s understanding the role as each game comes.
“That’s my biggest strength, understanding where the ball is going to be. I’ve been quite good at that for quite a lot of my career, nipping in front of the defender as its being played. That has helped me and getting on the ball is a big factor in the gaffer’s teams in that position.”
Watch the full interview with Ben Pearson by clicking on the video above.