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First Team News

Ali Looking For Positive Run Before World Cup

27 October 2022

Ali McCann feels a positive run of results in the four games prior to the World Cup break would be “massive” for PNE.

North End will take on Middlesbrough at Deepdale this weekend in what will be the eighth game of a busy October.

Within that run of fixtures has come back-to-back defeats as well as consecutive victories, so it’s now a bit of consistency that PNE will be looking for.

On the Championship season, Ali said: “It is so tight that if you do manage to string a good couple of results together you can see yourself climbing a fair whack so I think that’s what we’re aiming to do with the break coming up in November.

“We’ve got four games until then, so if we can get positive results in all of them and then maybe put a wee run together it would be good for us.

“It’s been a difficult month so to string a couple of wins together has been hard, especially with the games we’ve had, we’ve had some tough fixtures.

“I think to come away with wins against West Brom and Norwich was massive for us, but it’s just a case of trying to back that up with good results afterwards.

“If we can start a fresh and put a run together going into the World Cup break it would be massive.”

Facing Middlesbrough this weekend, North End will come up against a side who will be managed by former Manchester United man Michael Carrick for the first time, having been appointed earlier in the week.

Boro arrive in Lancashire sat just above the Championship bottom three, but having gone into the season hopeful of a push for the top six, the quality in their side is arguably better than where they currently are.

Match Previews

Match Preview: Middlesbrough (H)

27 October 2022

Ali said: “Obviously you don’t know what to expect from teams with new managers, but you know that all the lads on their team are going to be up for it because they’re trying to impress the new manager, so we just need to take that into consideration going into the game and play our own game really.

“Going into most games, obviously we do our background on the opposition, but in the main it’s about how we’re going to go and play, and how we can go and try to win the game, so on Saturday it’ll be no different.

“We could be up against anything so you don’t really know. We’ll be well prepared ourselves to go and try to win the game.”

Ali and his teammates return to action following last weekend’s disappointing result at Bloomfield Road, and since then they’ve had a free midweek for the first time this month.

Back at Deepdale, PNE will be looking to improve on home form so far this season, having won just once in league action on home turf.

“Everyone was disappointed with the result on Saturday there,” he added.

“It’s not what we wanted, but you can’t get too down about it, you can’t be too disappointed because there’s always another game to go and put it right.

“So I think everyone will be ready, rested and ready to go again with a real intensity on Saturday.

“We’ve had a couple of disappointing results at home recently so we’ll try and turn that around.

“If you can pick as many points [as possible] up at home in the Championship it’s huge and that’s something we need to improve on, so we’ll be looking to do that on Saturday.”

Hear more from Ali in his interview on iFollow PNE above.


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