Ben Pringle has been enjoying the new style of football that manager Alex Neil has brought with him this pre-season as he looked ahead to facing boyhood heroes Newcastle United.
Pringle signed for PNE during last summer’s transfer window and is delighted with the clean slate of a new managerial appointment, looking forward to making an impression and developing on the new style of football at Deepdale.
Speaking to PNE.Com he said: “It’s an opportunity for everyone in the squad to show what they can do and put a case forward to be in the first XI.You can see from the first couple of games what the manager wants to implement and the style that he wants the team to play.
“In training we’ve done a bit of work on it up to now, but it takes time for the manager to tell each player their role and the job that he wants them to do - and then to take it out on the pitch. From the games we’ve played we’ve looked decent and taken it on pretty quickly.
“Last season the previous manager had a different kind of style when we didn’t have the ball, this year with the gaffer he wants us ratting after the ball and trying to hunt it back. Then when you get it, enjoy having it, and I think that’s what we’ve done so far.
“We’ve got people that want the football, can play, pass and move and it suits certain players. The style he wants to play could bring out more in players that we’ve not even seen yet.”
As a Newcastle lad, the midfielder is looking forward to playing against his hometown club, but is more looking forward to playing against top opposition. The squad, including the Lilywhites’ No.18, are looking to test themselves and their recently worked on tactics against team that would expect to have more of the ball than them.
“That’s the reason we’re playing these games, it’s easy to do it against Accrington, Stockport and Morecambe – no disrespect to them – but especially in the league we’re playing in, we’ve got to be brave to get on the ball and you can’t be hiding.
“You have to get the ball, want it and move it and play like we’ve just been playing. We’ll face a different test against Newcastle and Burnley - that’s what you want, you want to play those games.
“Over the course of the season you’re going to face different challenges and it’s how you react to each one.
“The gaffer has told us if a team does ‘that’, how he wants us to play and if a team does ‘this’, how to change it. I’m sure as the season goes on we can adapt differently, with the personnel and the formation; he’s very straightforward and he knows exactly what he wants. Explaining it to the players is very straightforward, which is good.”
With a full 90 minutes now under his belt from the Accrington Stanley game, Pringle is looking to feature just as much going forward.
“The earlier you can get the 90 minutes the better. It’s not nice coming back after a couple of weeks off, as the years go on it’s changed so much. Now in the off season, players just need a couple of weeks to get back up to shape then they’re back to the level again, it’s always nice to play the game so hopefully it can continue.”
Tickets for Saturday’s game are available to purchase online at www.mypne.com – click on the link to buy online, or call 0344 856 1966 during opening hours.