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First Team News

No Pressure Says Barkhuizen

5 March 2018

Despite knowing the importance of the upcoming games at Deepdale, Tom Barkhuizen isn't putting too much pressure on the results this week.

The Lilywhites face fellow Play-Off chasers Bristol City and Fulham in back to back games at Deepdale, and while Barkhuizen admits it's a 'massive week' for the club, the forward is looking at the bigger picture.

Speaking to iFollow PNE ahead of the visit of Lee Johnson's side on Tuesday night, the 22-year-old said: "I think the key is not to put too much on the two games, it's obviously a massive week, we know that.

"The win at the weekend and how everyone was after the game highlighted how much momentum that's given us this week but we can't put too much pressure on ourselves because there's still nine games to go after this week.

"We will go out there, play our game, we will give 100 per cent and if we win, we win. If we don't, it won't be for a lack of trying.

"We could be going to Sunderland away, or Burton at home, but at the end of the day, you only get three points if you win whether you beat Bristol City or the teams further down the table.

"There are plenty of points to play for, people may look at it if we were to lose tomorrow that it puts us out of it but teams have caught us rapidly over the last few months. It went from maybe three or four looking for that sixth spot to maybe seven or eight can.

"Things can change really quickly, especially in this league. We've got April coming up soon, there's six games and if you can get a good momentum, I don't think it really matters when you it happens.

"We could win the last five games of the season and get in the top six, this league is really competitive, it's probably the most competitive in the world and we are really lucky to be a part of it."

North End bounced back in style on Saturday after just a second defeat in 18 games against Ipswich Town at the end of last month, and Barkhuizen feels that will only add to the side's confidence going into two crucial games.

"I think we need it after the Ipswich game, when we have put in a bad performance this season we have usually bounced back pretty well and I think for 85 minutes of the game we were totally dominant and we really deserved the win.

"I think Saturday was key for the forward players because we haven't really broken teams down well enough this season.

"That's probably been the biggest criticism that we've had from ourselves and other people and I think we showed we can, even in the first half we created some really good opportunities and to get the three goals was really pleasing.

Barkhuizen has now scored in the last four away games for the Lilywhites and on his own form, he added: "I think moving back over to the left it's probably helped me a little bit. I've played quite a bit on the right this season but I think my best performances have come from cutting in off the left.

"I've played a lot of games this season and it doesn't really matter where I play but I think that has contributed to an upturn in form for me."

Watch the full interview with Barkhuizen on iFollow PNE now by clicking on the video above.

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