'Broken record' - Everything Ryan Lowe said on Preston North End's 3-0 defeat to West Brom

Ryan Lowe Ryan Lowe
Ryan Lowe | CameraSport - Lee Parker
The Baggies booked their place in the play-offs on Saturday afternoon

Preston North End manager Ryan Lowe admits his side have been ‘nowhere near’ good enough since being beaten by Norwich City.

The Lilywhites have lost their last five matches of the season, with the Canaries defeat at Deepdale the first of them. PNE haven’t scored in any of those losses, with it the first time in more than 20 years that a Preston team, in the league, has lost five on the spin.

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The 2023/24 campaign was brought to an end at West Brom, where North End were beaten 3-0 - as the Baggies booked their place in the play-offs. For Lowe, the problems on show were more of the same and he outlined his disappointment post-match.

“Where do I start?” said Lowe. “We were growing into the game and the penalty knocked our confidence just before half time. I have looked at it back - it is soft and the kid has dived. But, to concede the two scruffy goals we did, is not us. I just feel like a broken record, saying the same thing. I will have to analyse it, look at it back and try find solutions to fix it - because that is certainly not good enough. Since the Norwich game, we have been nowhere near the levels.

“And the goals we’ve conceded have been poor. I have just said to the lads in there, whether it’s a bit of a soft underbelly or if we’re happy to just let the season fizzle out. We cannot do that. We have got to be on the money - we’re representing Preston North End Football Club and we’re representing our fans. We haven’t been good enough, collectively, in the four games since Norwich. I never look for excuses, but I think the inconsistency of the decisions - we’ve had 14 KPIs go against us. That is a lot... six, eight, 10 points - whatever it may have been, to help us.

“But look, the goals we’ve been conceding of late are nowhere near - schoolboy stuff. That’s what I have got to get my head around. I’ve just told the group in there that there’ll be new additions, more quality coming through the door, some will stay and some will be surplus to requirements. I have got to get it right next season, with the recruitment, to give ourselves the best possible chance. A season has been ever so good, up to Norwich and after that, it’s just petered out. I don’t accept that and the fans don’t accept that. Rightly so - and I don’t think the owner will accept it. We’ve got to find some solutions for that and be better.”

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On the performance at West Brom, Lowe added: “With all due respect to West Brom, they are a good team, well coached, fantastic players. The strength in depth and quality is there, but if we could’ve scored first and got that momentum - then who knows? I just feel we’ve fallen way short, over the last four games certainly, to try and get anything out of any game. I want to win more than we lose, which hasn’t been the case and we’ve conceded a lot more goals. The only bonus is where we’ve finished - 10th, which is a good season.

“But, I wanted a very good season. If you ask anyone, mid table for Preston North End over the years is where it’s been. But, I am trying to take it to the next level. And, we have fallen way short in the last four games. We just huffed and puffed - the creation was nowhere near. It’s the small detail of being offside when the ball is coming back, not getting in front of your man to receive the ball. That is the hardest part and I am disappointed in the way it’s ended. I will never slag the lads off or bad mouth them, but some of them need to have a look at themselves because the performances of late haven’t been good enough.”

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