Memory match: Peterborough v PNE

Jermaine Beckford battles for possession with Peterborough United's Gabriel Zakuani

Jermaine Beckford battles for possession with Peterborough United's Gabriel Zakuani

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The first of 18 goals in a Preston shirt for Jermaine Beckford was the winner against Peterborough in December 2014.

Beckford struck on the stroke of half-time, the only goal in the London Road clash.

This was his seventh start for the Lilywhites after joining on loan from Bolton Wanderers a month earlier.

And it came as something of a relief to Beckford to have got off the mark.

The front man said: “I had not felt too much pressure to be honest with you.

“I always knew that a goal was going to come – as a forward you have to have a certain level of confidence about you.

“In the games before this I had been a bit unfortunate not to score.

“Fortunately we had still picked up good results along the way. It was nice to score against Peterborough and to win the game but the most important thing was the result.

“That was a difficult place to go against a good team, so happy days that we got three points.

“Fingers crossed, there are more goals to come and I can help the side to pick up some more good results.”

There were indeed more goals to come from Beckford, 17 more in fact – including a hat-trick at Wembley in the play-off final.

This pre-Christmas visit to Peterborough was Simon Grayson’s 100th game in charge of North End, this the 50th victory in that time.

After some early pressure from the hosts, PNE came strongly into the game.

Scott Laird’s driving run ended with him shooting into the gloves of Posh goalkeeper Ben Alnwick.

Good work from Kevin Davies, in which the veteran striker took possession on the right wing and cut inside, saw him tee-up Paul Gallagher.

From just inside the box, Gallagher swept a first-time shot goalwards, only to see it hit the underside of the bar and bounce down just the wrong side of the line.

Gallagher then put a shot over the top as North End kept the pressure on.

A Laird cross just evaded Beckford in the box with Chris Humphrey unable to keep in play beyond the far post.

Laird then almost caught out Alnwick with a shot from the inside-left channel, one which the keeper had to dive to push past his near post.

Paul Huntington put a header too high after meeting a Gallagher corner before North End opened the scoring 30 seconds into time added on at the end of the first half.

Neil Kilkenny’s throw-in bounced through to Davies, whose subtle flick allowed the ball to run to Beckford.

The striker turned between two Posh defenders before lifting the ball over Alnwick with the outside of his right foot.

In the second half, PNE keeper Thorsten Stuckmann had to come off his line and clear after Huntington’s header fell short.

Aaron Mclean shot wide of Stuckmann’s near post after Craig Mackail-Smith’s run and cross had set him up.

Late on, PNE cleared a corner which Alnwick had gone up for.

They broke upfield, Andy Little shooting from 40 yards, only for a defender to get back and clear.