Notts County 0-1 Preston North End – Magpies rock bottom after crushing defeat

Notts County are rooted to the bottom of League 1, after a third consecutive defeat against Preston North End at Meadow Lane. The Magpies produced a battling display, and will feel disappointed with a result which wasn’t a true reflection of the day’s action. The match had very few clear cut chances, but the away side found the crucial goal in the 74th minute, which broke the deadlock and consequently won the match. 

Kiwomya felt his side deserved more, he said: “I thought we matched them today, you wouldn’t of known who was fourth and who was near the bottom.

“Just one mistake cost us the game. When the ball is dropping in their box, we didn’t get anything on the end of it”.

Platform’s man of the match Alan Sheehan also echoed his manager’s sentiments. He said: “I thought for large parts of the game we were probably the better team. We just had no cutting edge in front of goal.”

County started brightly, young midfielder Greg Tempest had his close range shot tipped wide by Rudd in the Preston goal. The away side responded, Beavon’s diving header clearing the crossbar, and Keith Keane also blazed over from inside the box.

The game turned feisty when former England international Kevin Davies was booked for elbowing County fullback Sheehan. PNE had a second player cautioned, after John Welsh brought down Boucard on the right hand side. County’s Danny Haynes made it a hatrick after bringing down Bailey Wright, as the first half’s action came close to boiling over.

It was County who were forcing the issue in the latter stages, pushing PNE backwards. Sheehan’s free kick caused mayhem inside the away side’s penalty area, the ball bobbled all over the place until eventually Preston managed to clear the danger.

At half time it remained goalless, neither side able to convert. Danny Haynes had worked tirelessly in the first half, he chased down loose balls but he looked a lonely figure as he attempted to lead from the front.

The Magpies came out of the blocks quickly after the interval, Calum McGregor found some space on the right edge of the penalty area but his left footed strike flew over the bar. Soon after, County nearly found the back of net from a corner. The set piece was flicked on by Coombes into the path of Danny Haynes, but he was crowded out by several Preston defenders.

The home support responded to the efforts of the players, the noise levels rising on the hour mark as it seemed the momentum was with County. However, PNE began to get a foothold in the game as the game approached 70 minutes. They won two consecutive corners, and the game was becoming stretched.

In the 74th minute, PNE fullback Scott Laird struck a left footed shot which inadvertently hit substitute Iain Hume; the ball bounced off him and crept over the line. It was a goal with a touch of fortune, and the County players will feel things just weren’t going their way. Typically when you’re down at the bottom, results are hard to come by. The Magpies will be hoping to bounce back when they face Oldham on Tuesday night.

James Lewer

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