Preston star Scott Sinclair hoping for another wonder goal against Bournemouth...or even a scruffy one from two yards

A repeat performance of his earlier heroics against Bournemouth will do just nicely for Preston striker Scott Sinclair.

By Craig Salmon
Thursday, 4th March 2021, 4:45 pm

North End welcome the Cherries to Deepdale hoping to complete the league double over them this season.

It was back on the first day of December when PNE departed the Vitality Stadium with all three points in the bag after a terrific 3-2 victory.

And the match was made all the more memorable by Sinclair’s goal-of-the-season contender.

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Scott Sinclair scores from 40 yards against Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium in December

The ex-Manchester City and Celtic frontman latched on to a headed flick-on from Sean Maguire just over the half-way line.

With his first touch, he played the ball with his left foot into space down the inside-right channel for himself to run on to.

Spotting Asmir Begovic off his line, Sinclair then chipped the home goalkeeper with a sublime right-footed effort from around 40 yards.

The goal is certainly on the honours board when it comes to the best the 31-year-old has scored during his career.

And in terms of range, it is certainly the furthest out he has scored from.

Sinclair more often than not notches his goals from inside the box, although he is not averse to finding the back of the net from further afield.

Who can forget his first ever PNE goal when he fired home from the edge of the area against old club Swansea City last season – and promptly announced himself to the Deepdale faithful?

While another top-notch long-range effort against the Cherries this weekend would be most welcome , Sinclair insists he would just be as happy with a scruffy goal from two yards and three points on the board.

“It’s never happened before,” said Sinclair in reference to his goal from distance against the Cherries.

“That was the first time. It was a different style of goal to the goals that I have previously scored during my career so far.

“It’s always nice to try something different.

“I just looked up and saw the goalkeeper off his line and went for it.

“But other than that one I have not really scored many goals similar, but I’ll keep looking, though.

“The majority of the time, though, it’s about getting into the box and the areas that you get the goalscoring opportunities from.

“It’s about getting in front of goal and mostly scoring from inside the box, but if there is an opportunity to score from outside and you have the time, it’s about giving it a go.”

Sinclair revealed that operating on instinct is a crucial part of being a forward player and when the opportunity presented itself against the Cherries, he didn’t think twice.

“I think it always comes down to instinct,” he said.

“When you get on the pitch, everything falls differently. You can’t just say, ‘This is what’s going to happen in the game’.

“You don’t go into games thinking, ‘Right I am going to score from 50 yards today’.

“Things just happen – you see an opening and you just go for it.”

For 70 minutes of that encounter, North End produced one of their best performances of the season.

Sinclair’s wonder goal was sandwiched by strikes from Tom Barkhuizen and Patrick Bauer, although a late rally saw the home side pull two goals back but PNE held on for the win.

It has been well documented that the current PNE team will have a different look to it this weekend to the one which took to the field at the Vitality Stadium, considering the number of incomings and outgoings in the January window.

Indeed Ben Pearson, who was in the PNE midfield that evening, is likely to be coming up against his former club after his January move to the Cherries.

“As well as myself, I think the whole team played well that night,” said Sinclair.

“We looked so comfortable on the ball and created lots of chances.”

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