The win on Saturday against Norwich City epitomised quality and passion and it was imperative that we continued our recent upturn in form before going into the international break.
Norwich are a good team and were on a decent run away from home so we knew it would be tough to get the three points.
But we showed the attributes from our previous four games and despite soaking up some early anticipated pressure, we were clinical in front of goal and never looked back after we had scored both goals.
Again, you the fans played your part with your fantastic support and, as I keep saying, this helps lift and drive our players on and puts pressure on the opposition.
After a very challenging start we are now unbeaten in five games and off the bottom of the table. I don’t want to dwell too much on the terrible fortune we’ve had on the injury front, but I always thought that when our key players returned and Phil had a fully fit squad to choose from, our results would start to improve.
The manager now has more options at his disposal with a greater number of players banging on the door for a place in the first team and it’s vital that they all remain fit and sharp for when their opportunity comes. I believe that our unbeaten run is not a coincidence and is testimony to the strength in depth we now have available.
Hopefully we will now have a prolonged spell with a fully fit squad, which is a luxury we have not had the benefit of since l have been at the club.
It was good to see Adam Armstrong on the scoresheet at the weekend and we all knew it was only a matter of time before he got that all important goal. I am sure he will kick on now as Gary Madine has also done. Their hard work and efforts have been clear to see but they have had to work even harder to ensure they get their just rewards.
We go into this international break in a far better position than the last one and now it will give everyone the opportunity to recharge their batteries in readiness for the difficult and congested fixture programme between now and the New Year.
As I have mentioned, the support has been unwavering all season and has played a role in helping us find form. By increasing our attendances over the course of the season the additional support will only help the team to move up the league.
To this end, the Club has today announced a Festive Bundle ticket promotion for the home games in December where you can watch all three games for one set price and make a maximum saving of up to £27. Please click here for more information.
Next week, we shall also be announcing details for half season tickets, which will allow supporters to watch the final 11 home games for a cost effective price. Details will be released on all the club’s channels very soon.
As l have said on a number of occasions l have every confidence in this group of players, but our recruitment team have to be out there actively scouting players to improve and grow the squad size to help us cope better when injuries and suspensions unfortunately kick in.
We cannot afford to stand still and our immediate ambition is to secure our place in the Sky Bet Championship this season and stabilise the club, and hopefully we will be challenging for those promotion places in the not too distant future.
The quality of this league has improved substantially since we were last here two seasons ago and we have to raise our levels of fitness and stamina as there is no question that to play in the Championship requires much higher physical and athletic qualities than in the past.
Concentration levels also need to remain high throughout the game but especially in the final 15 minutes when fatigue creeps in and mistakes sometimes happen. Due to the quality of the players in this league you cannot afford to switch off or you will be punished.
But, as I have always said, consistency breeds confidence which in turn brings results.
I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible cheering on the lads at Preston North End when we return to action and then back at Macron Stadium a few days later for our home game against Reading.