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Deepdale
Preston North End v Coventry City
League One
Saturday, January 18th, 2014, 3pm
Alex Smith
(Coventry City fan)

1. Why you were looking forward to going to the ground (or not as the case may be )

Coventry City have a rotten record at Deepdale having never won there. Plus I have been to Preston twice before and was not impressed on both visits. But this time we were stopping in Blackpool for the weekend so I was looking forward to it for that reason.

2. How easy was your journey/finding the ground/car parking

We left Coventry at 6pm on the Friday for Blackpool and the motorway was surprisingly quiet for a Friday evening. We were in Blackpool for 8:15 and we checked into the Havelock House Bed & Breakfast (which I would strongly recommend) and then hit Blackpool town for the night. We went to the King George pub and was brilliant, Friendly atmosphere, good DJ. We left for Preston at around 11:00 on the Saturday morning via a minibus which was very reasonably priced.

3. What you did before the game pub/chippy.... home fans friendly?

We went to the Fulwood Conservative Club which is located on the Blackpool Road. It was not very busy and the drinks were very cheap and had very good facilities, We did not speak to many North End fans but the ones we saw kept to themselves.

4. What you thought on seeing the ground, first impressions of away end then other sides of the ground

I never used to like Deepdale, but since they replaced that old stand on one side, it has improved dramatically. The new stand is not particularly eye catching, but has boosted greatly the overall look of the stadium.

5. Comment on the game itself, atmosphere, stewards, pies, toilets etc.

The One and Only programme priced a 3 was a decent read with lots of information on both clubs, The game was all PNE and I mean all PNE they were all over us and we were lucky to be going in 0-0 at the break. I purchased a burger inside the concourse and I have to say it was delicious and definitely worth the 3 I paid. The Stewards were helpful approachable, and talkative.

The atmosphere was good from the 900+ strong Sky Blue Army. The second half picked up from the first and PNE continued to dominate eventually going 1-0 in the 57th minute through Kevin Davies which improved the atmosphere from the Preston fans. But then Coventry responded and kept on coming close, Leon Clarke firing over from close range and Andy Webster missing a open net from a Blair Adams corner. Preston tried to time waste towards the end of the game. Fans keeping the ball in the stand, taking long at throw ins, kicking away the ball everything they could do they did. Kevin Davies was sent off on 87 mins for a two footed tackle on Andy Webster.

We were into added time when Coventry's Denzel Slager took a shot which was blocked by Neil Killkenny. The ball landed at the foot of Franck Moussa and hit a absolute cruise missile from 35 yards out and hitting the top corner which sent the away fans into raptures! The game ended 1-1 although with that very late equaliser, it almost felt like we had actually won the match!

6. Comment on getting away from the ground after the game

There were a few altercations outside the Bill Shankly Kop end which let the stewarding down a bit. Other than that there was no trouble. We met our mini-bus at the Fulwood Conservative Club and made our way back to Blackpool. It took us no longer that 40 minutes.

7. Summary of overall thoughts of the day out

Preston away is a good opportunity to a brilliant weekend away in Blackpool. So if you are going on your travels to Preston this season I recommend stopping in Blackpool for at least one night. So in the end, what I thought was not going to be a great trip, turned out to be one of my favorites.  
 


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