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First Team News

Ali Aiming For Winning Streak

1 September 2022

Ali McCann is looking for PNE to build on the midweek victory over Coventry City and put together a winning run.

Birmingham City are the visitors to Deepdale on Saturday, and they arrive in Lancashire to face a North End side who are yet to taste defeat or concede yet this Championship season.

Before the 1-0 victory over Coventry City, PNE had been left frustrated at the lack of cutting edge which has denied them three points, but now Ali – who played 90 minutes on Wednesday night – is looking for the team to put a winning streak together.

Watch Ali's Interview Here

Ali told iFollow PNE: “It’s all about trying to build on initially the clean sheets and the draws we’d been getting, but after Wednesday night it’s all about building on top of that and putting together potentially a winning run which would be massive, starting Saturday.

“So that’s everyone’s aim now, building on Wednesday and that’d be huge for us going forward.”

The Northern Ireland international was one of three men to come into the starting XI on Wednesday night, alongside Ben Woodburn and Ched Evans.

Emil Riis initially started as a substitute but came on off the bench to score the winning goal in the 73rd minute, marking PNE’s first in the league since Brad Potts’ wonder-strike against Luton Town.

Ali said: “I think the squad we’ve got here, you’ve got quality throughout, whoever comes in and comes out.

“You’ve got quality players ready and waiting which is why when you’re in the team you need to perform or else someone’s coming in to take your place.

“To have Emil coming off the bench is massive. He gave us that sort of drive forward and deserved his goal, and I think everyone’s just buzzing for him.”

At the other end, North End have remarkably managed to keep the back door shut in each league game so far this season, with seven consecutive clean sheets unsurprisingly becoming a new club record.

Ali added: “Everyone in the back three, Freddie [Woodman], and even the midfield and front line, the collective effort to keep the ball out of the net is huge.

“You can see the effort everyone’s putting in to try and defend those clean sheets, and keep them rolling over, so the longer that continues the better.

“At the minute it seems teams are having to work very hard to get chances against us, and people are throwing bodies in front of the ball to stop it going in.

“It just shows how much of a unit we are and what a collective effort it is, and if we can add goals like the other night, if we can add more then it can only bode well going forward.”

You can watch Ali's full interview on iFollow PNE.

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