Preston North End 1:1 Leicester City
City squandered two points at Deepdale on Saturday, having led through a Yakubu debut goal, allowing Preston in for a late equaliser from former-fox Iain Hume.
Sven Goran Eriksson made one change to his side for the long trip to Lancashire, with debutante Yakubi coming in for the injured Vassell.
The home side carved out the first chance of the game when Hume set up Hayes for a shot which Weale blocked with his face. The offside flag was raised, however.
After that City had the better chanes, Dyer squandering a one-on-one with the keeper and sending another effort narrowly wide; while Abe tested keeper Lonergan with a long range effort.
Preston then enjoyed a decent spell and delivered a series of set pieces but the City defence, with Bamba at it’s heart, coped fairly comfortably.
City’s best chance of the half came in the 33rd minute when Gallagher swung a freekick from outside the area onto the angle of left hand post and crossbar. The rebound came back to Gallagher but he fired his second attempt well over.
Weale then produced a fine save from Carter and Naughton did well to keep Hume at bay as the home side pressed for a half time lead. As it was, the team’s went in goalless at the break.
City looked the stronger side in the second half. Yakubu, set up by Dyer, sent a shot narrowly wide, and then Gallagher hit the woodwork again, sending a header against th eleft hand post with Lonergan beaten.
After Weale foiled Hume with a fine block, City eventually made the breakthrough on the hour. A clever ball from Gallagher set Yakubu up on th eleft. The Nigerian feinted to cut inside, fooling the Lilyshites’ defence before changing tack and beating Lonergan at his near post.
The Yak had been fed, and he had indeed scored.
It should have been the winner, but Preston were desperate for something from this game and fought hard for a point which they eventually got in the 89th minute. With Oakley, Moussa and Howard on for Dyer, Yakubu and Gallagher City conceded a lot of ground late on.
A long ball forward, a couple of nod-ons, and there was Hume popping up to beat Weale low to his left from just inside the penalty area.
City still had a chance to win the game in injury time but King was foiled by Lonergan in a one-on-one, getting an arm to the shot which saw the ball sailing over the bar.
A disappointed Eriksson commented: “I think that we lost two points. I think the way we played, especially in the second half, became better and better and with the chances we created we should win a game like this. We had two attempts that hit the bar, we were one on one with the goalkeeper twice and scored a goal so it should be enough to win. But unfortunately we made one mistake at the end of the match and they went through and scored.”
Preston: Lonergan, Jones, Morgan, St. Ledger, Cort, McLaughlin (Parry 48), Carter (Ellington 62), Russell, Linganzi (Nicholson 48), Hayes, Hume. Subs Not Used: Treacy, Mayor, Barton, Arestidou.
Leicester: Weale, Berner, Bamba, Hobbs, Naughton, King, Dyer (Oakley 77) , Abe, Wellens, Yakubu (Howard 86), Gallagher (Moussa 86). Subs Not Used: Logan, Moreno, Waghorn, Mee.
Referee: David Coote (Nottingham). Attendance: 14,205.