Frankie McAvoy was delighted to see his side stand up to the challenge against high-flying West Bromwich Albion.
PNE earned a point against the Baggies, who are unbeaten so far this Championship campaign, after Ben Whiteman put his side ahead, with Matt Phillips then levelling for the visitors.
Saturday’s point means it’s six unbeaten in all competitions for North End and the head coach has unsurprisingly been pleased with what he’s seen during that run of form.
Frankie told iFollow PNE: “That group of players we’ve got, I know they give everything. I don’t think anybody can question their integrity, their commitment, their energy, their enthusiasm.
“Everything they do for me is great and I’m delighted with them. I knew they would stand up to the challenge today because they’re formidable. They’re a good team, they’re big and strong, they’ve got some good players as well, so let’s be honest they’re decent.
“There’s teams that they’ve played against that they’ve turned over and thankfully today we’ve stood up and we’ve managed to maintain our unbeaten run, although when you come to your home games, you’re hoping you can try and win them.”
Whiteman’s goal gave the Lilywhites a great start to the game against the promotion challengers and they levelled the scoring amid slight contention.
Darnell Furlong’s long throw-in, which proved a threat all afternoon, led to the equaliser in first-half added time, but it appeared to be taken some way from where the ball had gone out, and Frankie was left frustrated with not only that but a few decisions from Andy Davies and his officials.
He said: “I know it’s difficult to officiate games, but I felt Sepp [van den Berg] is booked really early within the game.
“I felt Jordan [Hugill] got away with one on Jordan Storey beforehand and then the innocuous challenge with Pat [Bauer] leaves Pat in a heap and a really sore, bad injury if I’m honest with you.
“I don’t like anybody to be red carded, that’s not in my nature at all, and I know Jordan as well, he’s not that type of guy. He’s a big physical striker and these things can happen, but I just felt there were a few decisions today that didn’t go our way and that was the disappointing part for me.”
In the second half, McAvoy turned to his bench and brought on the club’s most recent signings in Josh Murphy, Ali McCann and Connor Wickham.
“I was delighted with Connor,” he said. “I felt he came on and did what he was asked to do in terms of holding it up for us, keeping it alive.
“I felt he did that really well and even defending in our box, he was a big size, a big presence, heading ones clear and even running out to try and stop other crosses coming into the box.
“I thought Ali McCann was excellent when he came on. [He has] really, really good energy and likes a tackle and I was delighted with that.
“The difficult one I had was getting Josh on because Emil’s throw has been good for us and it’s a weapon and I felt that might have been the time to get Josh on.
“We know he’s got pace. He makes one good run down the left-hand channel and he’ll be a wee bit disappointed he doesn’t manage to cut it back, but we just need to be patient at the moment.
“They’ll get their opportunity and chance, and when that comes they need to take it because I think our squad’s decent.”
Watch Frankie’s full interview on iFollow by clicking here.