You don't expect to see too many smiles at the bottom of the table but one player is back to his beaming best and he believes it's the key to staying up.

Preston North End striker Iain Hume has endured a difficult few season's and this one is no different as his side sit four points from safety with just four games left to play.

But his mood, rather than be downbeat is one of real hope and belief that he and his team mates can stay up.

"I think the main thing about playing football is to enjoy it and the only way to do that is to know that you're working hard and getting results and that is all coming together for us.

"Everybody going out there is working their socks off for each other, not just for themselves, which makes the team click a little bit better.

"Over the last few months I think anyone from the outside and from other clubs has noticed that we're not the team that was getting rolled over every week.

"We're a completely different outfit and we're going into games believing that regardless of who we are playing we have a chance of winning the game.

" I think that all comes down to the fact that the lads are going into every game with a smile on their face knowing that the lad next to them is going to work as hard as they are which is only going to benefit everybody - everyone who steps on that pitch and everyone behind the scenes."

That belief is borne from a dramatic turnaround in results and attitudes since Phil Brown replaced Darren Ferguson at Deepdale, with the real difference the 'desire and belief' now shown by each and every player.

"I think previously, although we played nice football we were pushovers," Hume said speaking exclusively to www.football-league.co.uk, "but recently we've played some of the best teams in the league and I think we have only lost two games.

"We know on paper ability wise we have got as much as anybody it's just been that little bit of desire and steel that we've been missing. Fortunately it's started to come together, albeit a little bit too late for some people's liking but we are trying our hardest and hopefully things will continue to go our way."

The results Hume mentioned include draws at Norwich City, Portsmouth and Doncaster Rovers and wins over Scunthorpe United, Swansea City, Coventry City and most recently Sheffield United.

After losing to Leeds on March 8th Preston were 13 points from safety but now they know a good Easter Weekend could be enough to see them out of the bottom three for the first time since November 19th.

"In the last two months I think we've really moved forward. We let ourselves down under the last manager, with the players that we've got but finally things are starting to come together, I know it's a bit late but at least everyone is showing the fight and the ability that we know we've got.

"We've proved over the last two months that we can compete and we can beat anybody and I think that's all we can think about at the moment.

"We are not worrying about who we are trying to catch we are just thinking that at the moment we have Millwall and Cardiff coming up and we just have to concentrate on them and do the best we can.

"Fingers crossed things go our way and then we look forward to Ipswich and so on and so forth. It's the old cliché of every game as it comes and go from there.

"It's easy to look back and think if we'd have done this differently or if we'd have got this result but the truth is it hasn't happened so we can't really start moaning about we've not done we've just got to make sure that in the next four games we do the best we can."

For Hume personally things are going well, he's on target for his best return since the 2006/07 season, with 11 to his name already, including six in his last eight appearances.

His loan move to North End was turned into a permanent move just two days before the club parted company with the Manager who took him there but he's gone from strength to strength under Brown.

"I missed his first couple of games through injury but since then I have just done what I always do, work my socks off and fortunately for me the ball has dropped for me in the right places at the right time.

"I'm not renowned for being a goalscorer but over the last couple of months that's exactly what I've been doing so I'm not going to argue with it I'm always going to do the exact same thing every game - I am going to work hard and I will normally chip in with my fair share of goals but I didn't expect to have as many over the last two months as I have done.

"I think at the moment they are getting the best out of me because I am playing games and I am playing with a smile on my face and I think that has been the big difference between me here and when I was at Barnsley. If you are getting the best out of me you will also get a few goals out of me and it has been all coming together recently which I am made up about."

You can see how much the club has improved this Saturday when they take on Millwall live on Sky Sports from 5.20pm on Saturday.

For the full list of televised games please click here

For all the latest news on Preston North End please click here