Preston North End’s new head coach Frankie McAvoy is thrilled at the opportunity he has been given, after being offered and accepting the role to lead the team going forward.
The 53-year-old, who will be joined on the coaching staff by Paul Gallagher and current first team coach Steve Thompson, says he is delighted to follow in the footsteps of many successful previous Scottish managers at the club.
Speaking to iFollow PNE after his appointment, he said: “I am massively proud. It is a fantastic day for my family and myself. I am over the moon to accept the job.
“I have had a great game introduction and I was told it would be decided after the eight games, so I am thrilled to be given the chance to take the club forward.
“I cannot thank Mr Hemmings and the Hemmings family enough, along with Peter Ridsdale and hopefully, with their faith in trust in me, it can pay off with the backroom team, the players and me going forward into next season.
“I am delighted it has been sorted and hopefully I can emulate some of the great Scottish managers that have been in the club’s history going forward. We are all unique individuals and I will do as best I can for Preston North End.
“It is an absolute honour to be given this opportunity. The likes of David Moyes, Billy Davies, Craig Brown and, most recently, Alex Neil are just a few fantastic managers and it is big footsteps to follow, but we are all unique individuals – I am Frankie McAvoy and I’ll do the best that I can for Preston North End and try and bring it success in whatever manner I can.”
For the last few weeks, the former Norwich City and Hamilton Academical coach has been clear that he was concentrating on the remaining eight games of the 2020/21 season, but did he always hope this would be the outcome?
“I wasn’t sure what would happen,” he continued. “I was putting my faith and trust in doing well. I knew we were under pressure to try and remain in the league and I didn’t want that pressure going anywhere else other than us as a backroom team. I tried to keep it away from the players and let them be the best they could be and ultimately, that is what we will do going forward.
“I am delighted to be given this opportunity at a fantastic club like Preston North End. For this to be my first manager’s job is way beyond my wildest dreams and I am absolutely thrilled to bits.
“Hopefully, we can have the fans back next season and we can put a team on the pitch that are going to do everything they can to make Preston North End successful – that’s what our task will be.
“Seventeen points out of 24 was beyond what I thought we could achieve and that is immense credit to the players. We have built good foundations and building blocks for us to build on and they can now go and enjoy their break and be ready to hit the ground running when we come back for pre-season.”
For the next few weeks, Frankie’s job will be player-less, with the squad on a break ahead of returning for pre-season, but he is under no illusions that there is a lot of work to do: “It is going to be a busy few weeks and that is part and parcel of the job.
“I am really looking forward to it. It is my first opportunity; I have had a short interim spell and now I am head coach and I am absolutely delighted.
“We have had some good building blocks and now they need to go and get a good rest, keep on top of their fitness levels and then we’ll get them back in for pre-season on 1st July and hopefully we can hit the ground running when it will be a fresh start for everybody and we hope it will be competitive and do as well as we can in the Championship.”
Frankie and his family have lived in the city since his arrival in 2017 and he has invested into it and is looking forward to continuing to be part of the community and to having the fans back inside Deepdale for his first game in permanent charge.
“Since we joined Preston North End, they have been nothing but really welcoming to us and it is a big part of my life now. My family is settled here and we love everything about it.
“We have moved to a new training ground and we have a group of players here who are hungry to do well for Preston.
“We have a backroom team of Paul Gallagher, Steve Thompson, Mike Pollitt, the analysts, Matt Jackson and Tom Little and their staff and I am delighted with the people who are here, the players who are here and we will give everything we can to make us as successful as we can be.
“Supporters pay their good hard money to support the team and they are entitled to their opinion.
“The one thing I can say, is that I will give everything that I can and I know the guys behind me will do the exact same.
“I am really looking forward to it. I can’t wait to get the supporters back in at the ground and let’s try and do the best we can. Get behind the team and let’s give it a right good go,” he added.