Former PNE hero Graham Alexander has tipped PNE to clinch promotion.
The Fleetwood Town boss was pleased with his side’s second-half fightback as David Ball’s sublime 85th-minute chip cancelled out PNE midfielder Daniel Johnson’s ninth-minute opener.
The 1-1 draw means the ex-North End full-back has now masterminded three home draws against the top three League One sides.
The Cod Army and Sheffield United are the only two teams to score three against league leaders Bristol City this season.
Fleetwood held runaway leaders City to a 3-3 draw at Highbury back in September and secured a 2-2 draw with third-placed Swindon in January.
But after witnessing Simon Grayson’s second-placed automatic promotion contenders on Sunday, Alexander believes his former club are on course to return to the Championship.
He said: “I would expect them to get promoted and I hope they do go up.
“It has been really pleasing for us because we scored three against Bristol City, two against Swindon and now we have scored a fantastic goal against Preston.
“We could have had more against PNE, especially in the second half. We have more than matched them over the course of 90 minutes and that is great for the potential of our team.”
The 43-year-old said his side were guilty of playing the occasion rather than the game in the first half.
But Alexander was pleased with the second-half transformation and he is not ruling out a late promotion push as his 12th-placed side are just three points off a play-off spot.
He said: “We told the players the truth at half-time and to be fair, as they always do, they responded in the right way. I thought we showed the real us in the second half and it was great to see, because I saw players playing with more determination, more desire and with a smile on their faces.
“I thought we nullified their threats and caused them all sorts of problems at the back.
“The season is still alive. We won’t let it die off. We are still in touching distance of the pack above us.”