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Sir Tom Named Preston's Greatest

17 April 2014

Sir Tom Finney has been named as PNE’s greatest player by the club’s fans in a poll conducted as part of The Football League's 125th Anniversary celebrations.

In the vote as the club’s greatest player, he took a massive 97% of everything cast – the biggest winning margin of any of The Football League’s Club votes, with Alex Bruce and Alan Kelly Snr a long way behind him. 

Sir Tom also took 69% of the votes as the club’s greatest captain to finish ahead of Sean Gregan and Ian Bryson.

However, the vote for the all-time fans’ favourite didn’t feature Sir Tom as a contender – instead it went to Graham Alexander, very much a modern-day legend at Preston.

Alexander took a resounding 71% of the vote, well ahead of Sean Gregan, Brian Mooney and Tony Ellis.

The vote to decide Preston’s greatest ever manager saw one candidate just as dominant with David Moyes racking up 76%, a long way clear of William Sudell and Jimmy Milne.

Moyes, now Manchester United boss, was in charge of Preston from 1998 to 2002 before moving on to Everton and in that time he guided the club to the Second Division title in 2000. 

A year after Moyes’ departure came the match voted as the club’s greatest, a 5-3 Deepdale success against Burnley, which took a massive 83% of the vote ahead of 1987’s 1-0 win at home to Northampton Town and a 9-0 thrashing of Cardiff City in 1966.

The 1888/89 season was the first in the history of The Football League and it was voted as Preston’s greatest.

They were the inaugural champions of the League, going through the 22-game season unbeaten, and they also won the double by claiming the FA Cup – doing so without conceding a goal in any of their ties. 

The campaign picked up 62% of the vote, ahead of 1999/2000 and 1952/53.

Sir Tom sits alongside other legends of the game including Brian Clough, Sir Bobby Robson, Billy Wright, Sir Stanley Matthews, Trevor Francis, Billy Bremner and Herbert Chapman who have all been named in a list of the greatest contributors to clubs’ league history in a vote as part of The Football League’s 125th Anniversary celebrations.

The names feature in lists for each of the current 72 Football League clubs’ greatest in various categories including managers, players, captains, fan favourites, matches and seasons. 

The polls were run by The Football League to celebrate each club’s own contribution to the last 125 years of league football. 

The results have been announced on the anniversary of The Football League’s formation on 17th April 1888 to bring down the curtain on a year of activity celebrating the start of the world’s original league football competition.

Nearly 100,000 votes were cast in the polls after clubs were first invited to compile their own shortlist for each category based on fans’ nominations via social media.

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