John Roper of PNE fan panel says change of atmosphere was a breath of fresh air


It’s far too early to start reading too much about what we saw at Deepdale, but the freshness and support inside the stadium was certainly a welcome breath of fresh air. I think the fans generally felt that the chains of the previous two regimes had been loosened and that we were going to see a Preston North End full of goals and offensive intentions. Both goals were both worked out well with man of the match Daniel Johnson involved in both, although for a while it looked like the visitors could get a point from the game they might have earned on another day.

North End put a lot of effort into this victory and fitness may well be a factor in the weeks and months to come, but for now everyone at Deepdale can be happy with the start Ryan has made.

The new boss has made five changes to the team beaten at Blackburn last week with Van den Berg, Bauer, Hughes, Johnson and Maguire replacing Storey, Cunningham, Lindsay, Olosunde and Evans.

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We started off pretty well and it was very clear to see the formation 3-1-4-2 with Whiteman taking the pivot role in midfield.

The North End pass was more focused from the start, but effort and pressure were the most noticeable factor. Twelve minutes into the second half and the Ryan Lowe era at Deepdale was on with a nice goal.

Johnson let the ball pass through him and put it in the path of Alan Browne who hit a throw-in before shooting Barnsley’s net.

But the visitors hadn’t thrown in the towel and eight minutes later equalized when a failed Brittain shot was directed to the far post by Woodrow.

The goal didn’t shake North End and we stuck to the plan and with 12 minutes remaining Johnson unleashed a practice field swing on a Ledson free kick after a Sinclair foul.

Thus, the first victory of Lowe allows PNE to climb to 14th place in the standings after 22 games, three places ahead of Blackpool.

It was a day in Deepdale where a sense of normalcy seemed to return and while the new manager took a while to get the team playing just the way he wanted, the ethics and work ethic were certainly nicer to watch. than what we have generally witnessed in Deepdale for a while.

The players have clearly bought into the manager’s philosophy and although a few blew a lot at the end of the game, I’m sure they will feel a lot better in practice on Monday morning.

This roster can leave us a little open at times but games against the bottom teams are usually never classics and we move on to Millwall next week.

Three points in the bag with a strong performance and hope that this is going to be the start of a special moment for us at Deepdale.


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