Big match focus: PNE v Brentford

Bees manager Dean Smith
Bees manager Dean Smith

Dave Seddon takes a look at Saturday’s Deepdale clash and also looks at landmarks in PNE’s history.


DEAN SMITH – The 46-year-old left Walsall to take the Brentford manager’s job in November 2015. He replaced Marinus Dijkhuizen in the Griffin Park hotseat, the Dutchman’s time in charge of the Bees having been a rather short-lived one. Smith spent nearly five years as Walsall boss, having previously been their head of youth. His willingness to work with young players who came up through Walsall’s academy made him a popular figure there and was to eventually attract the attention of Brentford.


DAVID COOTE – The Nottinghamshire official is in charge of Preston’s clash with Brentford at Deepdale. This will be only his seventh game of the season – he had not refereed this term until last month. Last season, Mr Coote was in the middle for two North End matches, the 1-0 home defeat to Derby and the 2-1 victory over Queens Park Rangers – a contest in which he red-carded QPR’s Luke Freeman. He had shown 22 yellow cards but no reds this season.


61 years ago: On October 27, 1956, Preston beat Leeds 2-1 
at Elland Road. Tom Finney 
and Jimmy Baxter got the goals for North End in front of a 36,571 crowd.

46 years ago: PNE drew 1-1 with Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane in the League Cup on October 27, 1971. George Lyall scored Preston’s goal in the fourth round tie. North End were beaten 2-1 in the replay at Deepdale.

29 years ago: This week in October 1989, Preston beat Gillingham 5-0 at Deepdale. Gary Brazil netted a hat-trick, with Tony Ellis and Warren Joyce also on the scoresheet.

22 years ago: Two goals from Simon Davey helped North End to a 2-2 draw against Doncaster at Belle Vue. It formed part of a 21-game unbeaten run in the league.