Preston North End ace hails centre-back Patrick Bauer as a defensive rock

Jordan Storey has applauded the ‘colossus’ Patrick Bauer who he has been playing alongside in Preston North End’s defence recently.

Tuesday, 21st September 2021, 4:45 pm

Storey, Bauer and Andrew Hughes came together as a trio for the win over Peterborough last month.

The Championship form has taken an upturn with the three of them in the backline.

Bauer was in the wars in Saturday’s 1-1 draw against West Bromwich Albion at Deepdale.

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Patrick Bauer suffered a broken nose in this clash with ex-PNE striker Jordan Hugill on Saturday

He broke his nose and needed stitches in a deep cut after clashing with former PNE striker Jordan Hugill.

The German was patched up on the pitch and went on to put in a fine display, something which wasn’t lost on Storey.

“Pat has been great since he came back,” Storey told the Lancashire Post. “He is a warrior, he puts his head in a lot of places where people don’t want to.

“Our results have picked up with Pat coming in, he’s been a colossus in the middle of the defence.

“Pat had a terrible injury last season and it’s great to see him back.

“On the pitch he’s a good talker even though it’s hard to understand him.

“We’ve got a right combo at the back haven’t we – Pat who is German, myself from the South West and Hughesy who is Welsh!”

Storey has enjoyed playing in the back three favoured by PNE head coach Frankie McAvoy since taking over.

Alex Neil had also used a back three a handful of times during his reign.

“In the majority of games we have been fairly strong and compact,” said Storey.

“We were disappointed with the first three games of the season but recently, and going back to last season, we didn’t ship too many goals. Even before Frankie took over, we used a back three on occasions. We did fairly well in those games.

“So it was not foreign to us when Frankie came in and adopted that approach.

“Fair play to Frankie for picking that system and sticking with it.”

Storey signing a new three-year contract on Monday was welcomed by McAvoy.

Said McAvoy: “I’ve been delighted with Jordan, you can see him playing with confidence.

“What he has done well is keeping on an even keel, not getting too low when things haven’t gone his way and not getting too high when results have been better.

“The biggest thing Jordan has improved on is his decision making.

“At times he might have got dragged out into positions he shouldn’t have gone into.

“But the more games he plays, the more astute he will become. He treats every game as a learning day.”