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Preston Preview

By: Richard Hubbert
Date: 12/12/2002

IT was only last month that the two sides met at Blundell Park, and this Saturday Town face Preston again at Deepdale in what has become a traditional pre-Christmas first division game for both sides.

Home > 2002-2003 Season > Previews > Preston (a)

The Bottom Line

Town need to halt a run of three defeats. Therefore a win would be nice.

The Opposition - Any Good?

The good news for Town fans is that North End’s number 9, who caused Town so many problems earlier this month, Ricardo Fuller is out for the season. But still, the Lancashire side have plenty of talent in their ranks. Former Huddersfield and Bury defender Chris Lucketti and ex Town loanee Marlon Broomes (left) are a strong combination at the back, whilst former Manchester United forward David Healy, is on his day, one of the best in the division.

Recent Form


LAston Villa(Cup)(a)0-5
DBrighton(h)2-2 (4-5 pens)

Players To Watch



Stuart Campbell

Richard Cresswell

The former Leicester City midfielder has been in much better form this season, playing on both flanks and even in central midfield this term. A £200,000 signing from Leicester City after the end of the 2000/01 season, Campbell has hit three goals from midfield this season, one of them of course against Preston last month at Blundell Park. A tricky midfielder, he likes to join in the attack and take on defenders as much as possible. The performance of he and the rest of the Mariners midfield could decide Town’s fate on Saturday.

Former Sheffield Wednesday, York City and Leicester City striker who was voted the club’s player of the year last season, when he scored 15 goals. This season he is doing equally well, leading the Preston attack with skill and guile, having bagged 10 goals already this season. He signed for what now seems a bargain £500,000 in March 2001 after a successful loan spell. A tricky customer, the former England under 21 striker will be a problem for the leaky Mariners defence to handle.

Top Scorers



Kabba 6
Pouton 4
Campbell 4
Livingstone 3

Cresswell 10
Fuller 9
Alexander 5
Healy 4

Team News



  • The Mariners will welcome back recent injury victim Darren Mansaram back into the side. This will accommodate John Oster on the right hand side of midfield, seeing Darren Barnard dropped to the bench.

  • In defence, Paul Groves may be tempted to change things, with his defence now officially the worst in the division, conceding the most goals so far. This depends on the fitness of John McDermott, who is struggling with injury.

  • If Macca fails to make it then Simon Ford will play right back with Paul Groves and Jason Gavin in central defence.

  • Elsewhere, George Santos may be installed to beef up the central midfield in place of Stacy Coldicott.
  • Striker Richard Cresswell returns from suspension. Youngster Pawel Abbott may keep his place, but more likely is Cresswell partnering David Healy in the Preston attack.

  • Elsewhere the North End line up will be the same as the one that lost to Wimbledon last week, with no new injury worries.
  • Probable Starting XI's


    Danny Coyne
    Simon Ford
    Jason Gavin
    Paul Groves
    Tony Gallimore
    John Oster
    Stuart Campbell
    George Santos
    Alan Pouton
    Steve Livingstone
    Darren Mansaram
    David Lucas
    Graham Alexander
    Chris Lucketti
    Marlon Broomes
    Rob Edwards
    Paul McKenna
    Dickson Etuhu
    Eric Skora
    Eddie Lewis
    Richard Cresswell
    David Healy



    David Soames
    Darren Barnard
    Stacy Coldicott
    Jonathan Rowan
    Sean Allaway (GK)
    Mark Rankine
    Pawel Abbott
    Tepi Molianen (GK)
    Colin Murdock
    Lee Cartwright

    Last Time Out

    I need not remind you that the last time Town played Preston was only four short weeks ago when the two sides shared a 3-3 draw at Blundell Park.

    Town Team: Coyne, Parker, Gallimore, Ford, Gavin, Oster, Campbell, Pouton, Coldicott, Livingstone, Mansaram.

    Attendance: 5,774    Report

    Preston Head-to-Head (77th on The Opposition Ladder).


    Fishy prediction: 1-1 Draw. Reader's POMs


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