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Preston North End 4-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Friday, 19th Apr 2019 16:57

Callum Robinson and Lukas Nmecha each scored twice as Preston North End beat Town 4-0 at Deepdale, the already-relegated Blues’ heaviest defeat of the season. Robinson netted on six and 22 to give the Lilywhites a comfortable half-time lead and Nmecha sealed the Lancastrians’ comprehensive win with his brace in the second half. The jaded-looking Blues, who never looked like getting anything from the game following a slow start in which Robinson netted the opening goal, went closest to scoring when Kayden Jackson hit the bar in the second half.

Idris El Mizouni was handed his full debut and Corrie Ndaba was named on the senior side’s bench for the first time as manager Paul Lambert made four changes.

The Tunisia U23 international, 18, came into the side on the right of the front three with Jackson starting in place of Collin Quaner, who was left out of the 18. Will Keane was on the bench for the first time since suffering his hamstring injury at Wigan in February.

In midfield, Flynn Downes returned in place of Andre Dozzell, who was a substitute, while at the centre of the defence Toto Nsiala replaced James Collins, who was missing from the squad.

Jon Nolan was back on the bench having overcome his achilles injury, while there were no loanees in the XI but Keane was joined by Trevoh Chalobah and James Bree among the subs.

For Preston, who went into the match having lost their last four, Joe Rafferty was handed his debut with Callum Robinson and Sean Maguire returning to the starting line-up. Ex-Blues keeper Michael Crowe was on the bench.

The home side started the game the brighter, skipper Paul Gallagher hitting an early freekick into a Town wall, then in the third minute Maguire struck a low effort which Bartosz Bialkowski claimed with ease.

However, the Lilywhites only had to wait until the sixth minute before they went in front. Robinson was fed on the edge of the area where he turned Nsiala and smashed a shot to the static Bialkowski’s left as skipper Luke Chambers dived in to block.

Having gone behind the Blues briefly took the game to the home side but without creating an opportunity.

However, in the 13th minute Preston threatened again when Lukas Nmecha was played through on goal, however, Nsiala did well to get back to slide in and divert his shot wide.

North End went close again from the resultant corner, Gallagher’s ball in from the right reaching Ben Davies, whose header beat Bialkowski but struck the post before being hooked away.

Town subsequently began to pass the ball around with more confidence in a game being played between two sides whose seasons are over in virtually a pre-season atmosphere at a warm and sunny Deepdale.

Downes shot over from distance on 18 after a promising El Mizouni ball in from the left had been cut out. Then on 21 Nsiala headed a Judge corner from the left to Declan Rudd in the Preston goal.

But in the 22nd minute the Lilywhites doubled their lead. Rafferty's cross from the right was headed away but only to Robinson on the left of the box from where he took a touch before shooting back across Bialkowski into the top corner of the net for his second goal of the game and his 13th of the season.

On 30 the teams went over to the touchline for a drinks break, adding to the game’s pre-season feel.

Five minutes later, a Chambers a looping header following a Judge corner on the left was cleared away from the line but with the Blues still not looking overly convincing.

A minute later Preston claimed a penalty when Nmecha went down as Chambers challenged but referee Stephen Martin waved away the protests which in the main came from the stands.

Preston had looked a big threat on the break all game with Nmecha getting behind the Blues’ backline on a number of occasions. This the on-loan Manchester City man did again on 37 before hitting his shot from the right of the box straight at Bialkowski, much the busier of the two keepers in the first half.

A minute later, Teddy Bishop hit a deflected shot through to Rudd, then on 43 the academy product turned his man on the edge of the area to the right before curling a shot just wide.

But the home side continued to present the more potent threat and in the final scheduled minute of the half went close again. Bialkowski did superbly to save Robinson’s shot but the ball looped into the air and reached Nmecha but the keeper had got back and was able to block his header as well.

In injury time a Downes shot was deflected over, then from the corner on the left taken by Judge seconds before the whistle Chambers headed goalwards but Rudd did well to palm the ball behind.

Town could hardly complain about the half-time scoreline with Preston having had chances to increase their lead with Nmecha not having made the most of his opportunities and Bialkowski having made his excellent late double save.

The Blues had found themselves behind before they had got going and even though they had had spells in control, had never really looked like getting back into the game.

Double-goalscorer Robinson may well have gone off at the break recalling last season’s corresponding fixture when he was one of two Preston players subbed in the 38th minute after Town, who went on to win the game 1-0, had dominated.

The Blues swapped Emmanuel for James Bree at half-time while Keane also appeared close to being introduced having warmed up with his match shirt underneath his bib.

Maguire flicked a header wide in the opening minute following the restart with the second half continuing in the understated manner of the first.

Preston increased their lead in the 56th minute. Maguire brought the ball forward from deep unchallenged and laid it to Robinson to his left from where he hit a low shot which Bialkowski saved but couldn’t hold and Nmecha rebounded home from close range.

El Mizouni, who will have benefited from further experience of first-team football, was swapped for Keane in the 59th minute.

Two minutes later, the Blues came close to pulling a goal back. Jackson seized on a mix-up between keeper Rudd and a defender as the ball was played through the middle. The striker did well to find himself space but his shot hit the underside of the bar and bounced out, rather summing up the summer signing from Accrington’s season.

Keane’s shot was blocked with Town seeing more of the ball in the Preston half but with a comeback looking unlikely. On 71 Preston switched Gallagher for Louis Moult, prior to the second drinks break of the afternoon, then in the 74th minute Josh Ginelly took over from Maguire.

The game, which had hardly been an enthralling fixture from the outset appeared to be petering out, but in the 75th minute the home side netted their fourth of the afternoon.

A low ball from Robinson on the left found Nmecha coming in at the far post from where the on-loan Manchester City striker slammed the ball past Bialkowski.

Town, behind by four goals for the first time since the Aston Villa defeat a year ago on Monday, withdrew Bishop, who like the rest of the team had had a frustrating afternoon, for Chalobah.

After Kenlock had been booked for an off the ball clash with Ryan Ledson, Preston sub Jayden Stockley forced Bialkowski into another impressive save late on with the home side looking more likely to add to their lead than the Blues were to reduce it in the closing stages.

Referee Martin brought the game to a close after two minutes of injury time with virtually all 428 travelling Blues supporters having stayed in their seats despite another very disappointing afternoon, even if they were unsurprisingly subdued by recent standards.

It was a Town side lacking in intensity from the off, looking like it had had much of its fight knocked out of it by last week’s confirmation of relegation.

After Preston had scored their opening goal in the sixth minute there was never any real doubt which side would go on to win with the Lilywhites showing the sort of clinical finishing that the Blues could have done with this season with the scoreline hardly flattering them.

Town will hope to be a lot better when they host Swansea City at Portman Road on Easter Monday.

Preston: Rudd, Fisher, Davies, Storey, Rafferty, Ledson, Gallagher (c) (Moult 71), Robinson (Stockley 76), Johnson, Maguire (Ginelly 74), Nmecha. Unused: Crowe, Earl, Huntington, O’Reilly.

Town: Bialkowski, Emmanuel (Bree 46), Chambers (c), Nsiala, Kenlock, Skuse, Bishop (Chalobah 76), Downes, El Mizouni (Keane 59), Judge, Jackson. Unused: Gerken, Nolan, Dozzell, Ndaba. Referee: Stephen Martin (Staffordshire). Att: 12,546 (Town: 428).

Photo: Action Images

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Sindre94 added 16:59 - Apr 19
Shocking. Embarrassing display. Loads of work need to be done.

MrTown added 17:01 - Apr 19
An absolute disgrace. Sort it out Lambert.

ianmarshall10 added 17:02 - Apr 19
Mick Out??? What a load of fukin idiots the lot of ya

masetheace added 17:02 - Apr 19
Maybe our youngsters are not as good as we are lead to believe .

Toperz added 17:02 - Apr 19
We're just a pub team from suffolk

SheptonMalletBlue added 17:04 - Apr 19
Marshall 10: what a donkey!!!

Bluearmy_81 added 17:04 - Apr 19
We will struggle next season and I'm not convinced the investment required will be forthcoming. Which league will we need to be playing in before fans finally turn on Evans?!! 🤔🙄

martin587 added 17:04 - Apr 19
Very uninspiring from Town.They showed very little interest in a game PL said he was going all out to win.Defending once again well below par.
Nobody shone for me.Nothing more to add other than a very long drive home with nothing to talk about.Enjoy your Easter lads.
Don’t know what to expect Monday.🤔

tpryke1982 added 17:06 - Apr 19
Shocking!!!......and Evan's wants more bums on seats next year!!......Not after that display....either invest or Fu#k off Evan's

runningout added 17:07 - Apr 19
if we finish season playing like a wet lettuce, this manager isn’t the one for us.... I like PL a lot but maybe I’m soft

blueboy1981 added 17:08 - Apr 19

Last thing we wanted right now, a huge shoot in the foot, when people are being encouraged to purchase Season Tickets.

Wake up you dozy lot - today was just not good enough.

Mr Evans - a complete shake up may be needed form TOP to BOTTOM. Where do you start to look, or indeed stop otherwise ? - it just has to change.

Hang your heads in shame - you'll all know who YOU ARE ..... !!!

Toperz added 17:08 - Apr 19
I'm not renewing next year, not with Evans in charge

TimmyH added 17:08 - Apr 19
Well bang goes the theory that 'with the pressure off we might play and get some wins' as posted by a few posters last weekend has gone out the window. Just to put into context Preston had lost their last 4 and I saw them play Leeds on the box the other week and they looked really poor and maybe this is a measure at how bad we really are...

With each result that goes by which gives no crumb of comfort to Mr Lambert you have to ask yourself if he is the man for the job to take us forward, players have to stand up and be counted and I'm not sure I would have got past 1 or 2 today, feel sorry for the travelling support.

tractorollson added 17:12 - Apr 19
What a joke, how is PL our best option right now!!

19781981twtd added 17:12 - Apr 19
Absolute disgrace please let this season be over and if any eternal optimists think we will bounce back next season you are seriously deluded !! oh well another day of gloating from the Norfolk lot as they bask in their glory and we sink deeper in the dire saturdays are just rubbishbeing a suffering follower of itfc.

BeattiesBackPocket added 17:13 - Apr 19
So come on someone speak up for Evans now!? How many excuses or stupid offers is it gonna take before he gets what he deserves!? About time we stopped accepting what’s happening. He’s made too many mistakes now from not investing when we were top, hiring clegg etc etc why is he here? One person please answer my WHY is he okay losing money 9 million in revenue lost next season of only wed invested half that in player wages then maybe we wouldn’t be where we are now! No 20 million doesn’t guarantee success necessarily but a decent competitive wage budget would! When our budget is already that of burton Albion in the championship what will it be next season same as col utd!?!? Come on people time for prostests he NEEDS AND MUST know how we really feel!

LWNR2013 added 17:14 - Apr 19
Not good enough !!!!

Dolphinblue added 17:14 - Apr 19
One bad result but we have been excellent in last 15 or so games....#keep the faith....coyb 😀

bennett added 17:15 - Apr 19
Heaven help us against Sheffield and Leeds. Not to mention Div 1.

jas0999 added 17:16 - Apr 19
Dreadful. The 400+ travelling fans deserved so much better than this. The players and manager will hopefully be very disappointed with themselves - wouldn’t hurt to refund the long suffering travelling support.

Anyone who thinks League One will be easy are I suspect in for a shock. We simply can’t rely on a team of inexperienced youngsters against seasoned League One players - whilst the current senior pros continue to show that they are nowhere near good enough.

Depressing, sad times. Lamberts record is actually pretty bad!

Toperz added 17:18 - Apr 19
Excellent were stone cold bottom of the league and were terrible. It's time to stop looking for positives when there are none, we are rubbish and showing no signs of improvement with less funding next year.

carsey added 17:20 - Apr 19
Got to play two up front. Got to make the opposition defend against us by attacking.
Anyone who thinks next season will be anything other than difficult is deluded.

dirtydingusmagee added 17:20 - Apr 19
dreadful dreadful dreadful . Anyone who honestly think it will be a breeze in Lge 1 [or that we will rip it up ,as some have said, will be in for another shock next season . We will finish closer to Lge 2 than the championship [and yes possibly in Lge 2 . ] absolutely shocking season . The kids wont get us back up . Unless there is a major overhaul throughout nothing will improve. Good luck with the season ticket sales Marcus, and thanks for nothing .

warktheline added 17:20 - Apr 19
Stated a couple of days ago ‘losing mentality’ is a massive issue within club, also mentioned Lambert needed to ‘blast’ a few ear holes! On it goes, and on, and on! Somebody else to be speechless this evening! Maybe Evans will need to rethink and drop next seasons prices even lower! Reap what you sow! This is on you Evans, your lack of investment, involvement and interest has well and truly came home to roost!

dirtydingusmagee added 17:24 - Apr 19

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