Tom Stead wants Preston North End U18s to carry on keeping clean sheets right until the end of the season after another shutout in Saturday’s goalless draw away to Wrexham.
The first-year scholar has now played in all of the youth team’s last four games, preventing the opposition from scoring in every one of those encounters, and he believes he and his teammates can repeat that feat for the remaining four games of the campaign.
“It’s good, of course,” the 17-year-old said of the recent defensive record. “It’s like you’re just doing your job really, but you’ve got to keep them coming in every game now until the end of the season.
“It’s just working hard as back four to keep teams out. The midfielders and strikers are also working hard so that they get the interceptions or are getting the ball back.
The centre-back was not just at the heart of the action at the back in the weekend clash, however. He was perhaps the closest of any North End player to breaking the deadlock, agonisingly heading against the post from Melle Meulensteen’s first-half free-kick.
“If that would have gone in, it would have made all the difference to the game.
“We needed to be more clinical up front. We made the chances and we were better than them throughout the game, we just need to take our chances.
“They had a good striker up front but I thought we did well to keep them out. He was quick but he didn’t get in behind much at all, so I think we did well and most of their shots were from outside the box, too.”
The young Lilywhites improved greatly in the second-half but Stead still felt they should have won the game, and he now believes that’s something they must do in all of their remaining matches.
“I thought in the first-half we needed to be better. They were as good as us in the first-half, if not better. In the second-half it clicked a bit more and we were on top of them for most of that time and we really should have got the win.
"We just need to try to win all of our games. Hopefully we can get all the points that we can."