WATCH VIDEO: Clean sheets are foundation for success says Preston North End’s Ryan Ledson

Ryan Ledson says Preston North End’s first clean sheet in nearly three months was one of the many positives to take from the midweek victory at West Bromwich Albion.

By Dave Seddon
Saturday, 29th January 2022, 8:00 am

A lot of the focus went on the other end of the pitch as Emil Riis and debutant Cameron Archer found the net in the 2-0 win.

North End kept the back door shut against the Baggies’ talented front three – in fact the hosts did not muster an effort on target.

Not since the 2-0 win over Luton on October 30 had PNE kept it clean at the back.

Preston North End midfielder Ryan Ledson

Twelve games were played in which they conceded before Wednesday’s shut-out.

It is something they will be looking to repeat against Bristol City at Deepdale this afternoon (3pm).

Midfielder Ledson told the Lancashire Post: “The big one from midweek was the clean sheet, we haven’t had enough of them this season – this was the first since October.

“I think we need more clean sheets and we need to win more away games, so we achieved both against West Bromwich Albion.”

The desire to keep Albion at bay saw North End alter their approach slightly.

They did not play out from the back as much so as not to play into WBA’s hands.

Said Ledson: “It was an elimination of risk because West Bromwich are the best pressing side in the league.

“So the last thing we wanted to do was play out from the back, allow them to win the ball and put us under pressure.

“It was about playing a bit longer to Ched Evans, in behind to Emil and when the ball settles that is when we could play.

“We went back to what we did towards the end of last year with myself and Ben Whiteman sitting in there and Alan Browne in front of us. That worked last year and it was worked well this week.”

Ledson got his chance to start in midweek due to Daniel Johnson being away with Jamaica.

It was his first start in the Championship since November.

A knee injury recently kept him out of a couple of games but he is back to fitness.

Ledson said: “My knee every now and then swells up and I just have to look after myself.

“At West Bromwich I got a bit of cramp at the end after playing nearly the full game but I’m fine now.

“It was nice to start but I couldn’t really have any complaints about not doing recently.

“I think DJ ,since the gaffer came in, has been back to being the DJ of old, he’s been brilliant – so has Browney.

“That is what the squad is for, we have got a squad of 23 players who can come in and play when called upon.”