PNE’s heroes and Villans

Daniel Johnson celebrates after opening the scoring at Deepdale
Daniel Johnson celebrates after opening the scoring at Deepdale
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Daniel Johnson admitted his first goal in a Preston North End shirt owed much to the years spent at Aston Villa with team-mate Callum Robinson.

Johnson set PNE on the way to Saturday’s 2-0 win over Scunthorpe at Deepdale by turning home a cross from Robinson.

The 22-year-old joined the Lilywhites in a permanent move from Villa last month.

Since then, Robinson has made the same move, signing a second youth loan after a successful stay in the autumn.

Johnson said: “Callum and myself go back years at Villa and have built up a good understanding in that time.

“We had a good partnership in the teams there and hopefully can reproduce that here at Preston.

“When Callum got the ball I was screaming for him to get it over to me in the middle.

“Without looking up he managed to find me with the pass and I stuck the ball over the line.

“It was a really good feeling to get my first goal for Preston and more importantly help us get the three points.

“With a couple of the other results 
going for us, it was a good day.”

Preston’s second goal came from Paul Gallagher, his 12th of the season.

Robinson played a part in that one too, his shot parried by Iron keeper Luke Daniels, only for Chris Humphrey to return the ball into the six-yard box for Gallagher to net.

Johnson felt that North End had steadily improved as the game went on, following a flat opening period in which the visitors were on top.

He said: “At half-time the gaffer told us that things were a bit slow out there. Scunthorpe had slowed things down too.

“We were told to pick the tempo up, play at the tempo we like to normally.

“I thought we did that and we managed to break them down with the two goals. I was delighted to score and it was a big three points for us.

“Hopefully we can follow this up against Walsall in our next game.

“This was my fourth game for Preston and I’m feeling fitter and stronger.

“With not being able to play in the cup games, it has been a bit stop-start for me.

“But hopefully now I can get on a run and show what I’m about.

“I’m settled at the club. The other lads have been very welcoming and having Callum here has been a bonus.”

Elsewhere, teenage PNE left-back Nick Anderton has been ruled out for the rest of the season after fracturing a shin bone while playing for Barrow.

Anderton, who joined the Conference North leaders on loan in January to get first-team experience, suffered the injury in Barrow’s 2-0 win at Leamington on Saturday.

X-rays revealed a fracture in his left shin bone and there was also damage to his ankle.

Meanwhile, North End, in conjunction with club sponsor Virgin Trains, are running a football special train to the MK Dons game on March 7.

The train runs from Preston and will stop at Wigan, before travelling direct to Milton Keynes.

Buses will be provided to take fans to and from the ground, which is included in the overall price.

Standard class is £27 for adults and £25 for concessions, with ambassadors priced at £25 for adults and £23 concessions.

First class, which also involves food there and back is £37 and £35 respectively, ambassadors £35 and £33.

Bookings are now being taken by the PNE commercial department.

Supporters are asked to note that it is a ‘dry’ train, with no alcohol permitted on board.