Football / News

Tom Barkhuizen high on confidence ahead of Preston North End’s trip to Blackburn Rovers

North End could move to within three points of the play-offs.

Preston North End attacker Tom Barkhuizen says his display in a 3-0 win against Reading last weekend, in which he scored twice, could have been the best of his career.

The 23-year-old now has four goals in eight appearances for the Lilywhites, and admits he and his teammates are full of confidence going into the Lancashire derby clash this afternoon.

“I felt that was my best game in a long time, if not the best game I have ever played,” he said of the win over the Royals. “It was just a really good feeling and hopefully there is more to come.

“I said when I signed that I don’t really mind where I play as long as I’m getting on the pitch and able to do my bit for the team. I have played in three or four different positions already.

“At the moment, I am just taking each game as it comes. I just want to keep playing and doing well.”

That victory put Simon Grayson’s team within six points of the play-offs, and that target of a top six finish is still well within reach, according to Barkhuizen.

He added: “We are fighting every week for three points and if we win every single game then we probably would make the play-offs.

We know it is not going to be easy and we are playing some really big teams over the next few weeks but confidence is pretty high after the weekend.”

Barkhuizen has plenty of experience of Lancashire derbies, having played for both Blackpool and Morecambe earlier in his career.

However, the Blackpool-born forward is keen to see his side treat the clash against Blackburn like any other match.

He said: “If we go in there thinking too much about the game, then it affects how we will play. I think we just need to think of it as though it is any other game.

“I don’t think we will pay too much attention to what they are going to do. If we focus on what we are going to do, we know that we can hurt teams.

“They are going to come out of the traps flying and they got a good point against Fulham but it is a derby so you don’t really know what is going to happen.”




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