Preston North End have been on their best behaviour this season

During the course of the season a Preston North End victory would inevitably be followed by opposition fans claiming it was done by foul means rather than fair.

Friday, 31st July 2020, 12:30 pm

The ‘teams like Preston’ phrase became a familiar one on social media, the inference being that an over-physical approach was the only way the Lilywhites could possibly have won.

The FA’s Fair Play table tells a different story and puts PNE right up there in the good behaviour category.

Alex Neil’s men were the second best-behaved team in the Championship in the 50 league and cup games they played in 2019/20, with only Brentford ahead of them.

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Joe Rafferty saw red against Fulham at Deepdale

In terms of league games only, they were the third best behaved – Brentford and Stoke in first and second.

The fair play table shows 67 yellows in all competitions and two red.

Joe Rafferty got the first red card against Fulham in December, then Paul Huntington got a retrospective red in the home defeat to Derby County on July 1.

Darnell Fisher’s red card at West Bromwich Albion was successfully overturned on appeal to the FA.

Fisher and Ben Pearson were the two North End players to serve suspensions for totting up the bookings.

Right-back Fisher was booked 12 times, serving a one-match ban for reaching five yellows and two games for getting to 10.

Pearson missed one match for five yellows, his disciplinary record far better than 2018/19 when he was sent off three times.

Jayden Stockley and Paul Gallagher were both booked five times but their fifth cautions came along after the deadline for bans for that number.