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First Team News

Home Form Key For Neil

1 February 2018

Manager Alex Neil is targeting an improvement in home form as his side return to Deepdale on Saturday.

North End head in to the weekend's clash with Hull City in high spirits after a 3-0 win over Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night, but with more points picked up on the road than at home this season, the gaffer is looking to start picking up more victories in front of the home fans.

Speaking to iFollow PNE, the manager said: "Home form is something we want to try and improve, we have found it a difficult balance between getting the ball down and trying to play but also being effective at the top end of the pitch.

"I think we've beaten our away record for last season now, and we've got 17 games still to play so I think that's a real positive.

"We are three points outside the Play-Offs at the moment, I think the difficulty you've always got is when you are maybe playing better away from home at times, the majority of your fans don't see how well you play.

"So I think there's a tainted view on how well we have done this season, I think we've had a great season so far but we would like to bring good form back to our home games as well.

"I think we've lost one in 13 games now which at this level is an incredible run but we want to try and extend that and get the three points against Hull, that's going to be crucial for us."

The PNE boss was speaking to iFollow after the January transfer window came to a close, and Neil gave his thoughts on the club's business throughout the month.

"We would have liked to have signed more players, we spoke about that, but sometimes there are reasons that contribute to it. We are trying to get deals done and sometimes when people can't talk to you or won't talk to you, it becomes really difficult because there's only one party trying to negotiate.

"Unfortunately that was the case with one deal in particular but I think looking at squad, we've got good players, we've added two forward players to our ranks as well and I think we are in good shape."

The main piece of business on deadline day was the departure of striker Jordan Hugill, a deal that Neil felt suited all parties.

"I think you get some transfers which are good for everyone, to be honest they are quite rare nowadays, there's normally one party that's upset about something.

"I think for Jordan it's a great chance, he's worked extremely hard to get to the level that he's got to.

"He played for us and did well and I think we've managed to refine his game this year and make him an out and out number nine and a target man and he's now got a chance to ply his trade at the highest level.

"We've got a good transfer fee out of a bargain so I think everybody has come out of it in good shape."

Watch the full interview with Neil as he discusses this weekend's game, more on transfers and his squad for the remainder of the season.

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