Preston North End retro: Graham Westley's revolution gets off to the perfect start with win over Simon Grayson's Huddersfield Town

A Preston North End 'revolution' began 10 years ago this month as Graham Westley paraded his new look side in the opening game of the season against Huddersfield Town in the League Cup.

By Tom Sandells
Wednesday, 3rd August 2022, 12:30 pm

They walked the walk as they won 2-0 on a Monday night at Deepdale, with 10 of the starting XI debutants and three more coming off the bench.

It was a rebuild in the third tier that boss Westley described as a revolution, though ill-fated it would prove for the former Stevenage boss.

Only Thorsten Stuckmann survived the previous season as Westley got stuck into the side six months into his role at PNE.

Nicky Wroe scores the second goal for PNE.

The season started with the League Cup in 2012 due to delays off the back of the Olympics and it was a foe from Yorkshire that made the trip to PR1, they were higher league opposition too having been catapulted into the Championship via 40 goals from Jordan Rhodes.

Future North End boss Simon Grayson was in charge of the Terriers, that also boasted future PNE skipper Tom Clarke and Calum Woods amongst their ranks.

Goals from Jack King and Nicky Wroe gave Preston the victory and a spot in the second round of the cup.

The hosts could have been a goal to the good inside the first minute as Scott Laird’s cross was chested down by striker Chris Beardsley into the path of John Mousinho.The PNE skipper caught it on the half-volley, his shot parried by Alex Smithies.Oscar Gobern put a chance wide at the other end, while James Spencer got in behind the Preston defence but was unable to control a pass under pressure from Paul Huntington and Shane Cansdell-Sherriff.

Jack King scores the opening goal.

North End went in front in the 29th minute. Jeffrey Monakana was the creator, the winger having got behind the Town defence.

His cross found King in the box who looped a header back over Smithies and into the net.Monakana blasted a shot over the bar from Mousinho’s pass before Preston found the net again five minutes before half-time.Beardsley chased a pass to the touchline on the right and shielded it as he got company from the visitors’ defence.He managed to turn and pull the ball into the middle where midfielder Wroe had the simple task of tapping in from six yards.The pace and tempo of the game dropped somewhat in the second half, that not too much of a surprise bearing in mind this was the first game with any meaning.David Buchanan came off the bench at half-time to take the place of Lee Holmes.He set up a 53rd minute chance for Monakana but the young winger drilled a shot across goal and wide.Wroe drove an effort too high, while substitute David Amoo whipped a low centre across the face of goal but no one could get on the end of it.Huddersfield had a late chance to reduce the deficit but Adam Clayton’s shot went past the post with the help of a deflection.This cup win formed part of a decent start to the season by North End though it did not last long as their season began to fall apart towards the end of the autumn.

Graham Westley applauds the North End fans.
Chris Beardsley battles alongside a young Tom Clarke at Deepdale.