Why in-form Preston Athletic are going all out for title glory after reassessing their target

Preston AhtleticPreston Ahtletic
Preston Ahtletic
Preston Athletic assistant manager Mark Smith insists they won’t drop their high standards in pursuit of the East of Scotland 1st Division Conference B title.

The Pennypit outfit have reassessed their goals for the season after an impressive start in the second tier, with just five points dropped from their 15 league matches so far.

Preston have the best defensive record in the entire East of Scotland set up with only four goals conceded in the league, and ahead of a double header with Luncarty, they have their sights on league leaders Glenrothes.

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“It’s going really well from a league perspective,” said 30-year-old Smith. “We know we can’t be complacent; we can’t take our foot of the gas and give the players a false sense of security.

“Jack’s [Lynch, manager] first goal was to get into the top six and I think it’s fair to say we have comfortably achieved that. Our second realistic aim was promotion, but now it’s 100% on going and winning the league. As the season as developed and how we’ve progressed we’ve changed our aim.

“We did a bit of a rebuild, we lost a lot of players, brought a few boys in and promoted a few. What we have done this season is using the youngsters as we’ve got a good 20s team. What is maybe different to this Preston team compared to previous Preston teams is that we have a group of players who are all pals and the team spirit is brilliant.”

Smith only recently stopped playing but is loving the coaching side, he continued:

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“I’ve always quite fancied the coaching aspect, when I was still at Preston as a player I didn’t know what I wanted to do because I was busy with family and work. We had a conversation and at that time came in as his only coach. Darryl Devlin has come in this season and he’s been a really good addition.

“I still get that Saturday buzz before games. If someone does something that we’ve worked on in training, we feel we have contributed to that, so when that comes you kind of feel like you’ve scored.”

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