Graham Westley is hoping to use his previous experience of beating Sheffield United this season to the benefit of his new club Preston tomorrow.
North End travel to Yorkshire looking for their first victory in 34 years at Bramall Lane. Already this season, North End have suffered at the hands of the Blades, who are currently second in the League One table.
Preston’s 4-2 loss to United at Deepdale in October is a match Westley knows all about, as he travelled up to Deepdale that evening on a scouting mission when he was boss of old club Stevenage.
Whatever it was that Westley learned from that evening stood him in good stead as, a few weeks later, he masterminded Boro to a 2-1 success over Danny Wilson’s men at Broadhall Way.
He said: “They are a side that I watched against Preston earlier on in the season.
“We happened to have a night off and I managed to get up and watch the game.
“They played very well that night. We will be aware, albeit they had lads on loan at that stage who aren’t there now, of the attacking threat they have to offer.
“We’ll also be aware that Preston weren’t in fantastic form at the time but Sheffield still conceded goals against them.
“They will be looking at the game and thinking, ‘It’s a different Preston – Graham Westley has beaten us this season in his role as Stevenage manager’ and they will be aware of that. They will know that I have managed to produce a side which has produced a win over them and they will be thinking about that.
“They will have the problem of working out what does Graham Westley add to Preston and how is that going to come together.
“It’s a difficult psychology from their point of view, of trying to understand exactly who they are playing against tomorrow.
“They know that they have been beaten by the manager and they know that Preston have players who can score goals against them. It’s an interesting dilemma for them to come to terms with.”