Stars and PNE fans kick off for charity
Kasabian met Coronation Street as PNE's community day proved a roaring success.
The main attraction saw a North End fans’ team take on a side put together from the football and showbiz world by Simon Grayson.
Ex-England cricket captain Andrew Flintoff, Corrie actor Colson Smith, Simon Rix and Chris Edwards – bass players with the Kaiser Chiefs and Kasabian respectively – were among those to play for Grayson’s team.
Soccer AM’s John Fendley was in the side together with ex-PNE players Brett Ormerod, Brian O’Neil and Paul McKenna.
Fans had bid by auction to play in the game, which was raising funds for Prostate Cancer UK.
A well-contested game played in front of a healthy-sized crowd at Deepdale saw Grayson’s XI win 3-2.
Flintoff caught the eye with an excellent performance at the heart of the defence in the celebrity side.
Known more for his skills with the bat and ball, Preston-born Flintoff was one of the star performers.
It was former Blackburn midfielder David Dunn who ran clear to put Grayson’s men ahead.
Smith, who plays Craig Tinker on the Coronation Street cobbles, stretched the lead from close range after being played in by great play from McKenna.
Jack Wilson reduced the arrears before half-time with a good finish past PNE keeper Mathew Hudson and an own goal from assistant boss Glynn Snodin saw the fans’ team level in the second half.
They were managed on the day by Mark Lawrenson.
The winner was scored by Ormerod (left) who kept a calm head to slot the ball home in the last 10 minutes.
More than £7,000 has been raised from the game, as a result of the auction and donations made by the crowd.
At half-time in the game, the player of the year presentations were made.
PNE fan Julie McClellan presented the player of the year award to Aiden McGeady.
Before the game, fans had the chance to take penalties against youth-team keeper Callum Roberts.
Later, Roberts was named scholar of the year and will join the first-team ranks in July having been offered a professional deal.
John Welsh collected the players’ player of the year award on behalf of skipper Tom Clarke who recently had surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles tendon.