Ryan Lowe felt ‘comfortable’ in Preston North End’s win over Sheffield Wednesday

PNE won 0-1 at Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday afternoon
Preston North End boss Ryan LowePreston North End boss Ryan Lowe
Preston North End boss Ryan Lowe

Preston North End manager Ryan Lowe was delighted with his team’s performance in Saturday’s 0-1 win at Sheffield Wednesday.

Liam Lindsay headed home the winning goal in the 49th minute - pouncing on a delightful Kian Best free-kick delivery from the left. The Scot popped up with his first strike in PNE colours since May 2021, to extend the Lilywhites’ unbeaten start to the league campaign.

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Lowe was forced into one change for the match, with Duane Holmes replacing Ali McCann - who missed out with a minor hamstring issue. But, he was over the moon in the away Hillsborough dugout as he watched his side pick up another battling victory.

“I’m really pleased for the group,” he said. “They’ve been fantastic. We knew what we were going to come up against today in Sheffield Wednesday: a big, strong, powerful team. I felt comfortable for large parts of the game, to be fair, sitting there watching it. Credit to the boys, they were fantastic in everything they did. They got us up the pitch well, they managed the game well; we asked them to play a bit higher second half, which we did.

“And then obviously when we score, they’re then pumping balls into our box and long throws into our box. We just had to sink a little bit but we were fantastic and I’m really pleased. We try and do things properly and that’s the way forward. We speak to the lads in the right way at half-time and then they go out and perform.

“We just said to get the (number) tens a bit higher and make more forward runs to find the tens, to get them turning and running at their back four. Second half we were better; a bit calmer in possession and going forward. Yeah, there are obviously worrying moments when you’ve got to defend long throws, but enjoy defending and enjoy being good at what you do. That’s what our lads did today.”

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The game had the feel of one where a single goal may prove enough, and it was Lindsay who wanted it the most inside the Sheffield Wednesday box. The quality of Best’s assist - and the desire from his big centre-half - particularly pleased the North End boss.

“Liam Lindsay yesterday nearly headbutted the crossbar in set-play training,” said Lowe. “We said to him: ‘Come on, mean it when you go up there’ - because he is a big powerhouse Liam. He has gone up there from the free-kick and there you go, he’s got his head on it.

“It’s an unbelievable delivery from Besty. That is a winning goal and if you can add set plays to your game it benefits.I think we’ve had some great deliveries; even Browney’s corners and wide free-kicks. If you want to score you can score; Liam Lindsay wanted to score today and he did.

“When you’ve got a left foot like Kian Best’s, then it’s just going up there and getting on the end of it. He is a fantastic young kid; his attitude and application has been different class, so long may that continue. We’ve got to keep coaching him because he gets a bit excited, wanting to win the ball back.”

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