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First Team News

"We Have To Pull Together" Says Tom Barkhuizen

4 November 2017

First Team News

"We Have To Pull Together" Says Tom Barkhuizen

4 November 2017

PNE's Tom Barkhuizen refused to dwell on this afternoon's defeat to Ipswich and highlighted the importance of sticking together during a tough period.

The Lilywhites - who are currently plagued with injuries were beaten 3-0 away to Ipswich today, and although the North End winger admitted the confidence in the camp isn't the same as it was during the unbeaten period, he was adament that North End have the correct ingredients in the dressing room to get out of this tricky period.

"We just need to show the character that we manage to show when we are winning," said Barkhuizen to PNE.Com.

"You can't just be altogether and showing great spirit when you're winning - it's times like these when you've got to pull together. I'm confident in the lads in the dressing room that we'll come back fighting. Today was a disappointment but there's nothing we can do about that now; We just need to look forward to the next few games ahead and try and get some wins under our belt."

It's no coincidence that this difficult period has come at a time when North End are missing key personnel - particularly in the heart of defence - yet Barkhuizen refused to be drawn on such excuses, continuing: "You can take injuries in to account but there's no excuse really for the performances in the last couple of games.

We've still got a squad and it's about pulling together now and picking three points up in our next game.

"The goal on half-time really was a real kick in the teeth for us. It was a bit of a nothing game up until then. We'd given away the free kick and they scored right on half-time, and when confidence is low it's not what you need, but we need to show real character now, and show the togetherness we've got to bounce back now against Bolton.

"Throughout the season, we've struggled against teams we've gone behind, even more so now that we're low on confidence, so going behind was a real kick in the teeth. "It really was a nothing game up until they scored, not a lot of chances for either team, their goal is probably their first shot on target and unfortunately for us, that's the way it's going at the moment. 

"Pearo's had the chance early on and the 'keeper's made a good save. Maybe at the start of the season, we were getting a bit more luck, and that would have gone in but we can't dwell on it now, we put it to one side now and get ourselves ready for the break and prepare for the game against Bolton on Sky."

Alex Neil's side have just under two weeks to put things right now with the International break coming during a period which allows time for one or two to come back from injury.

Barkhuizen added: "If you look at the last International break, it probably came at a bad time for us because we were flying but this one has probably came at the perfect time, because it's time to regroup and get some key players back.

"At the end of the day, the injury list is relentless at the moment but we just have to find a way to deal with it, and I'm sure as a squad we'll pull together and start to turn things around."

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