Gregan: ‘PNE need a leader’

Photo: David Hurst'PNE V Bury at Deepdale'Iain Hume
Photo: David Hurst'PNE V Bury at Deepdale'Iain Hume
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Like all the Preston supporters who were inside Deepdale on Saturday, I was frustrated to see Bury’s stoppage-time equaliser hit the back of the net.

Conceding a goal so late in a game is a massive blow, and when that has happened to me in the past, you come off the pitch feeling like you’ve been beaten.

Had North End held on to the lead for just a couple more minutes, it would have been seven points from nine in a week.

They’ve had to settle for five points, but the positive way to approach things is that they are now unbeaten in three.

Last Tuesday night’s draw at Carlisle wasn’t to be sniffed at – the Cumbrians are strong at home and chasing a play-off place.

In my book, that was a pretty decent follow-up to the win at Exeter, and it would have been lovely to have then beaten Bury.

It’s a case of learning how to see a game out when you’ve got a slender lead, slowing things down and being solid.

There can be occasions when someone sticks the ball in the top corner from 30 yards in stoppage-time and there’s not a lot you can do to prevent that.

But when it’s just a routine ball into the box, a goal being conceded can just be down to someone losing concentration for a split second.

As a defender, you want your midfield to drop that little bit deeper to give you the extra protection.

If the ball goes out of play, take a second or two longer to take a throw-in or a goalkick, just to break up any momentum the opposition has.

In those situations, you need a good talker out there. For the last five years of my career, I talked my way through games, organising and encouraging people.

I think Preston are lacking a leader out there, someone to give the younger lads a helping hand.

That’s not Graham Westley’s fault because I don’t think there has been one for a couple of years now.