Preston North End 0 Derby County 0 match report: Stalemate at Deepdale on the day PNE remember Trevor Hemmings
Preston North End fought out a goalless draw with Derby County as Deepdale honoured Trevor Hemmings.
A crowd of 18,092 - North End's biggest for some time - applauded the memory of PNE owner Mr Hemmings before kick-off.
The action on the pitch didn't live up to the occasion, the Lilywhites very much second best to their visitors in the first half.
They improved in the second half which was more even, perhaps North End having slightly the better of the play.
There were chances for both sides to win it.
PNE goalkeeper Daniel Iversen made four good saves over the course of the afternoon, the last of those moments after a Curtis Davies header had struck the bar.
Emil Riis had the hosts' best chance, getting clear on goal eight minutes from time but he put his shot too close to Derby keeper Ryan Allsop.
Ahead of kick-off there was a celebration of Mr Hemmings' life, a video tribute shown on the big screen.
The teams were led out by North End captain Alan Browne who carried a cloth cap - the PNE owner's favoured choice of headwear - Browne laying in on the centre spot.
There was a minute's applause before Browne laid the flat cap behind the goal at the Alan Kelly Town End.
Whether or not the occasion got to PNE but the first half belonged to visitors Derby.
Graeme Shinnie's third minute shot which cleared the bar set the tone in terms of it being the Rams on the front foot.
There was an early yellow card for Daniel Johnson for a trip on Jason Knight which meant the midfielder had to watch his step from then on.
Iversen was called into action in the ninth minute, reaching up to tip a shot from Ravel Morrison over the bar.
It took until the half-hour mark for North End to create a chance, to even set foot in the Derby box with any purpose.
Tom Barkhuizen got the ball on the right and fed Sepp van den Berg on the overlap outside him.
Van den Berg's cross was met by Josh Earl at the far post who headed over the bar.
Iversen made two good saves later in the first half. He dived to his eight to push out Tom Lawrence's low shot on the tun from 20 yards in the 31st minute.
Then two minutes into first-half stoppage-time, the PNE keeper saved at his near post from Festy Ebosele who had been able to run unchallenged from deep into the box.
Five minutes after the break, Riis' long throw in was headed clear from the box and back to him.
Riis returned a cross into the the middle which Andrew Hughes met but headed across goal and wide of the far post.
Before the hour, PNE replaced Barkhuizen with Scott Sinclair up front. Soon after, Ben Whiteman joined the action from the bench in place of Ryan Ledson.
Morrison shot just wide from the edge of the box in the 64th minute before the North End goal led a charmed life sixty seconds later.
Knight delivered a corner into the box which Davies headed against the bar. The ball bounced back to Phil Jagielka, his follow-up shot superbly blocked by Iversen next to the post.
PNE responded with a couple of chances which livened the crowd up.
Sinclair had a shot parried by Allsop, then the substitute couldn't make a decent enough contact with a shot on the turn after a scramble in the box and saw the effort go wide.
Riis should have broken the deadlock in the 82nd minute when Johnson's slide-rule pass sent him clear on goal.
The Danish striker got into the box but put his low shot too near keeper Allsop who blocked.
A couple of minutes later, Whiteman's corner from the left found Hughes at the far but his header was deflected wide.
PNE: Iversen, Storey (Murphy 76), Bauer, Hughes, Van den Berg, Ledson (Whiteman 63), Browne, Johnson, Earl, Barkhuizen (Sinclair 58), Riis. Subs (not used): Rudd, Cunningham, Lindsay, Potts.
Derby: Allsop, Ebosele, Jagielka, Davies, Buchanan, Shinnie, Bird, Knight, Morrison, Lawrence, Baldock (Sibley 24, Kazim-Richards 76). Subs (not used): Roos, Jozwiak, Stearmann, Watson, Williams.
Referee: Joshua Smith (Stamford)
Attendance: 18,092 (2,448 away)
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