Preston North End Fans’ Panel: John Smith’s disapponted it was ONLY a point at Nottm Forest

PNE fans at the City Ground
PNE fans at the City Ground

Prior to this fixture Forest had not beaten North End in a run of six matches dating back to March 2016, a sequence which has included four draws.

So it was no surprise when this meeting between two evenly matched sides produced another three-pointer for the football coupon pundits.

If there was any disappointment to be taken from what I personally thought was a fine away point, it was the fact that had we had some firepower up front we could have possibly taken all three against a Forest side who, although well backed by a partisan crowd of over 27,000, in my opinion were there for the taking. Our own fans – numbering over 1,500 – were very vocal and contributed to a fine atmosphere but ultimately were disappointed to concede a goal late on in the game after leading.

Forest’s legendary boss Brian Clough once said: ”I wouldn’t say I was the best manager in the business but I was in the top one “ and if he was watching from above he would not have failed to be impressed by someone he would have called the ‘young man’ in charge of the opposition, as Alex Neil once again got his tactics spot on, despite having limited attacking resources to work with, the end result of a very credible away draw becoming our first point on the road this season.

The draw was a really comfortable one with our defence rarely being put under serious pressure.

I was particularly impressed by the displays of Joe Rafferty and Patrick Bauer, two relatively new additions to the side who have added a different dimension to our defence.

Rafferty deserves a special mention especially as, being a right-sided player, he has looked very accomplished in what had become a problem position of left-back due to injuries.

Ben Pearson and Ben Davies put in their normal dependable shifts while Ryan Ledson and Josh Harrop also put in effective displays.