Preston North End FANS' PANEL VERDICT: John Smith
Whether or not it was due to the fact that I'd worn my lucky underwear for the day or just that Ashton Gate is our happiest hunting ground in recent seasons, we recorded our fifth successive league win at this venue.
Our much-needed first win on the road this season was one which delighted the travelling faithful, who had paid the extortionate price of £32 to see their team. However the feeling at the end of the game as players and fans celebrated together made it seem worth every penny. What was just as pleasing as the result for me was our all-round performance with the display being of the same high standard as some of last season’s – much more like the ones of last season. I left the ground having seen our unbeaten run stretch to seven games with the feeling that we might have finally turned the corner after what has been a disappointing campaign so far until this recent run of results. It was the first time for a while that I’ve seen us play with such confidence and cut out the nervous defensive edge to our play. Once we scored our goal midway through the first half, it always looked like the three points would be heading back north. The home side put us under a little pressure in the second half but Declan Rudd, on his return to the side, made a Gallagher-esque save to preserve our lead and in the main Bristol – unlike their famous fan Tony Robinson aka Baldrick of Blackadder fame – lacked a cunning plan to breach our solid defence. The tried and trusted centre back pairing of Paul Huntington and Ben Davies looked back to last season’s best and were well supported by Tom Clarke and Josh Earl, a player I feel deserves an extended run in the side on this display. Let’s hope the current happy mood can be continued after the international break following the visit of our rivals from Blackburn Rovers at Deepdale.