Preston North End goalkeeper Declan Rudd played a huge role in the Lilywhites’ win over Luton Town at the weekend.
The No.1 made a vital spot just minutes before Jayden Stockley’s winner against the Hatters at Deepdale, which lifted the team back into the top three in the Championship.
And speaking to iFollow PNE as the team returned to training in the build up to this weekend’s trip to Cardiff City, the stopper felt it was moment he had earned with some recent bad luck.
“On a personal note, after recent weeks, where I have probably been a bit unfortunate with a few decisions going against me, it is just nice to be involved in a game and make a crucial save at a crucial time to get the result, because we have struggled in the last four to six weeks to get a result and two get two wins in a week is massive to get us back onto that winning momentum again,” said Dec.
“It is my job [to make the save]. I am there to keep the ball out of the back of the net and fortunately he hit it somewhere I could get something on it. It is just good to get back in dressing room winning another game.
“After feeling the pain of winning four on the bounce and then get two wins at home – where we have been so good this year – is huge to the way we want to keep going forward for the rest of the season.”
He was also helped in the closing stages by a ball boy behind his goal in the Alan Kelly Town End, something he was delighted with: “It is quite unusual for a lad of that age to know what he needs to do – probably me shouting at him helped him out a little bit!
“What he did was great, because it just wasted a few more seconds and at that part of the game we needed to slow it down, because they were getting a bit of momentum going and he kept hold of it and gave it to me, which was brilliant.”
Now it is two games on the road for Alex Neil’s side, but the former Norwich City man is excited at the games ahead: “These are the sort of games you want to be playing in and after our recent results we are going into them in the perfect mindset, full of confidence again and believing we are still in the battle in this league – one of probably 16 teams – who could still go up!
“It is two big games and they are the games where we hope that everyone of the players turns up, because in recent years, we have done ourselves proud.
“Hopefully we go out there, with it being Christmas, in a good frame of the mind and keep the run going.
“We have done great so far and to lose four games on the bounce and still be in the position we are in, just shows the start we have had to the season.
“It is just about carrying that on now. Games come thick at this time of the year and if we can be on the right side of the momentum, winning games and picking up points when we are playing three games in a week for three weeks, it can put ourselves in a really good position – but saying that, we still have half a season to play, so a lot can happen,” he added.