On the same day as our club owner’s three runners fell whilst tackling the daunting obstacles of Aintree in the world’s most famous steeplechase, his employees at Deepdale were not faring much better.
In the first of three difficult games which will go a long way in deciding their destiny in the race for a play off place, PNE were beaten 1-0 by Sheffield United.
Facing the Blades and then Leeds and West Brom in the space of eight days is the Championship equivalent of jumping Becher’s Brook, Valentines’ Brook and The Chair in quick succession.
Unfortunately, after starting the day just three points adrift of a top six finish we ended it being five behind after failing to pick up any points against the promotion-chasing Yorkshire side.In the first half we played well creating four or five good chances against the well organised Blades side.
The goal which eventually decided the game came after we once again succumbed to this season’s Achilles heel of conceding soft goals from high crosses in our penalty area.
There is a saying in football that it is the hope which kills you and that having no expectations or hopes may be better than having your dreams destroyed in a cruel manner.
This maybe the best way for the older generation of fans who followed the team through the generally bad times of the 70s, 80s and 90s to approach the remaining six games of the season.
Many of these fans as well as the younger generation who saw the two play off final defeats at Cardiff fantasise about having just that one season in the Premier League in the same way non football people dream about winning the lottery.
However we must never give up the hope and keep up the pressure on in the run-in no matter how unlikely it may seem after Saturday’s defeat.