Goalless draws are a rarity for Preston North End
Preston North End’s goalless draw with Reading last week was something of a rarity in recent seasons.
The Lilywhites picked the afternoon the Sky cameras turned up to serve-up their first 0-0 at Deepdale for 23 months.
Last season, North End played out a goalless draw just twice, both of those on the road – at Huddersfield in July and Cardiff in December 2019.
In the 2018/19 campaign, there was the goalless draw with Nottingham Forest at Deepdale in February 2019 and against Derby at home a couple of weeks earlier.
There were six stalemates during Alex Neil’s first season in charge of North End.
Four of those came in the first three months of the 2017/18 campaign.
They drew 0-0 at Leeds and Middlesbrough, then did likewise at home with Millwall and Bolton.
On Boxing Day 2017 they drew 0-0 at Barnsley, then had a blankety-blank with Norwich later in the season.
North End’s last seven Championship matches have produced five clean sheets.
Of the three goals let in during that run, Forest’s winner on January 2 was a penalty.
When they were beaten at Bristol City a fortnight ago, the first Robins goal was a header from a corner, the second in open play.
It’s a statistic Neil is pleased with, although he doesn’t want to see PNE’s attacking play stifled by the defensive solidity.
Neil’s men could still do with some more clean sheets .
Only four teams in the division have conceded more, Barnsley, Coventry, Huddersfield Town and Wycombe Wanderers.