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Academy 4-0 Fleetwood Town

8 September 2014

Three second half goals from Preston North End U18s rounded off a convincing display as they easily brushed aside Fleetwood Town at Victory Park.

A goal inside two minutes from Jonathon Lunney put the hosts in control, but it was in the second half that the three points were secured with goals from Luke Pritchard, Eddie Dsane and Ben Roberts

Manager Nick Harrison said: “It was a brilliant performance to score four goals and to not concede.

“The game is all about putting the ball in the back of the net and we’ve done that four times today which is really pleasing.

“One of our aims is to put teams under pressure from the start, you certainly can’t win the game in the first few minutes, but you can have a good platform to build on.

“It’s something we’ve asked the boys to do and they’re good players and they’ve taken this on-board.

Buoyed by avenging their defeat by returning the favour against Rochdale last week, Preston started brightly, and with the game less than two minutes old, Pritchard burst into the box, easily beating his man to cross for Lunney who provided the perfect start to the game for Harrison’s men.

Despite dominating possession, Preston did not have many efforts on goal to show for their endeavour as the first half went on, though Dsane tried his luck on a couple of occasions.

Fleetwood almost drew level in what was a rare chance for the visitors as Djabi Mamadou found his back post effort blocked by Sean Whelan.

It was the Cod Army that were sent out early for the second half, and as Preston kicked off; it was the men in red that started the better.

But for all Fleetwood’s hard work, Preston soon doubled their lead.

The game was quickly becoming stretched, and as Pritchard looked to make another run into the box, he won a free kick in a dangerous position.

With the ball on the left corner of the 18-yard box, Pritchard followed up his goal from last week as he hammered the ball into the top right hand corner of the Fleetwood goal leaving the keeper with no chance.

With nothing to lose Fleetwood piled forward in numbers and looked to have pulled one back, but Jordan Hancox was denied by the fingertips of Ross Dalton who pushed his effort over the bar.

But the game was settled when Preston scored twice in as many minutes.

Firstly, substitute Clive Smith drove the home side out of their own penalty area and sent a long cross field ball into the path of Dsane, who brilliantly fired a half volley into the bottom right hand corner.

Incidentally, it was Dsane who had been denied by the post just minutes prior to giving his side a three-nil lead, before turning provider for Preston’s fourth.

As Fleetwood continued to press forward in numbers, Dsane crossed for substitute Roberts to score.

It was a convincing display by the Lilywhites and the scoreline certainly did not flatter the hosts who fully deserved the win.

Harrison said: “When you’re one-nil up, there is always that risk that we might concede, and the players went out there in the second half and got the goals as Fleetwood tired.

“It’s good to see that the fitness levels are there from our players to be able to do that for 90 minutes.”

In what was a much improved display in finishing from PNE in the second half, it was backed up by a resolute defensive display as Fleetwood really struggled to create an opening.

Centre half Harry Hagon said: “We kept a cleansheet which we’ve not had in a couple of games now so we’re pleased with that and we got off [to a great start] with an early goal and then secured the game in the second half.

“After we got out third, the fourth came straight away, their heads went down, but we just stuck together as a team and encouraged each other and we managed to see the game out.”

Preston: Dalton, Quigley, Whelan, Roscoe, Sampson, Hagon, Boyd, Robinson, Dsane, Lunney, Pritchard.

Subs: Smith, Bullock, Wicks, Jagne, Roberts.

Fleetwood: Wynne, Williams, Vile, Smith, Muscat, Smith, Wood, Nelson, Djabi, Myers, Hancox

Subs: Tetteh, Johnstone, Glean, Stinton

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