John Roper's Preston North End Fans' Panel verdict: We've got to take it on the chin

North End suffered a humiliating 0-4 defeat at Kenilworth Road against Luton Town and suffered their heaviest defeat under the managership of Ryan Lowe.

By John Roper
Thursday, 17th March 2022, 7:27 am

To be honest I wont insult anyone`s intelligence by trying to excuse or mitigate North End`s performance at Luton but suffice to say that it is the worst I have witnessed for a very long long time.

The team defended like schoolboys in the first half and the writing was on the wall after the first goal as the first thing some players did was to point fingers and to try apportion blame.

When we did get the ball in forward positions our movement was mechanical at best compared to the home side and when the Hatters made it four I really did fear for what the rest of evening would bring.

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North End's Alan Browne shows his dejection at the end of the match

Preston were slow in their build-up, nervous on the ball and when you add to that good players continually making bad decisions it is easy to see that this is a night North End will want to forget in a hurry.

Ryan Lowe made just one change to the side that drew at Cardiff on Saturday with Ali McCann coming in for Liam Lindsay and Andrew Hughes switching to his more familiar left centre-back role.

North End actually started the first few minutes of the game quite well looking sharp and penetrating but from the moment Berry scored after ten minutes it was all downhill for PNE and their shambolic defence.

Luton were on the offensive and just before the half hour mark the home side were two up when Iversen came to punch a ball and completely missed leaving Kioso the easy job of tapping the ball into the net.

Iversen then saved well but it was to get worse a few minutes before half time as Berry flicked the ball in at the near post past a wrong footed Iversen to leave North End shell shocked and Luton three up going into the half time break.

The manager made two changes at half-time but it was the team in the orange shirts that sealed the deal just before the hour mark when Iversen parried but the ball hit Diaby and went back into the goal to give Luton their fourth.

Preston were all at sea and it was probably a good job that Luton decided to declare at this point as Preston looked hopelessly lost.

It was the worst we have seen from a Ryan Lowe side and the manager went public very quickly after the game to say he would reimburse the ticket monies for the 614 that made the almost 400-mile midweek round trip.

It was a decent gesture from Lowe and showed the level of disappointment the manager had in his charges.

He came over to the North End fans at the end of the game, held his hands up and said sorry which was appreciated by most of the travelling contingent.

Football is about not getting too high when you are doing well and not getting too low when things are going badly and North End must take this defeat on the chin.