John Smith's PNE fans' panel verdict: A finale to remember

As in the lyrics of the Vanessa Williams song we "saved the best for last" with a commanding display producing our biggest win of the season.

By John Smith
Sunday, 8th May 2022, 12:30 pm

Prior to Saturday the last time I had seen a home win over Boro was in April 1972 when I was at junior school wearing short trousers with a "this coat belongs to " label written in marker pen attached in the lining of it in.

We did manage to break this sequence last season when two goals from Emil Riis helped us beat Boro 3-0 behind closed doors.

This time out Riis also had his shooting boots on and was unlucky not to be awarded a hat-trick but another brace did see him become the first North End player since Alex Bruce in season1978/79 to break the magical 20 goal barrier at this level.

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Preston North End fans await the kick off

As commentator David Coleman said "goals pay the rent " and this season Riis has certainly chipped in with his share. In most seasons this feat would undoubtedly have won him the Player of the Year award .

However on Saturday Daniel Iversen showed again why he was this season’s resounding winner by making two outstanding second-half saves to preserve our healthy two-goal advantage.

The game’s closing stages seemed a bit surreal as although we were coasting at 4-1 up, our fans were being outsung by a raucous following from Teeside .

They also saw the final appearance of "Cumbrian Canavarro "Paul Huntington who was given a send-off not seen here since the likes of Graham Alexander, minus the last minute goal though his header from a corner did draw an expressed "ooh" from the Town End.

The win also meant we finished in a higher ranked position than our "friends from the seaside" which surely is worth a celebratory drink this summer.