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Club News

On This Day… 3rd April

3 April 2020

Club News

On This Day… 3rd April

3 April 2020

For today’s look back to what happened in our history, we find two 1-0 wins for the Lilywhites 11 years apart.

The first of those game on 3rd April 2004, when midfielder Scot Gemmill scored his only goal during a short loan spell from Everton, as Craig Brown’s side overcame Bradford City by the solitary strike.

Gemmill's goal for PNE ended a slump for the home team, but put Bradford a step nearer relegation.

Alan Combe tipped Graham Alexander's shot over the crossbar and Simon Lynch volleyed wide in a poor first half, but Gemmill latched onto Dickson Etuhu's pass and slipped the ball past Combe with the first attack after the break.

Michael Branch volleyed over as the Bantams searched for an equaliser while Jonathan Gould saved from Nicky Summerbee as North End held out.

The Lilywhites went into the game without suspended strike duo Ricardo Fuller and David Healy, who had scored a combined total of 31 times that season, but they managed to win for the first time in seven games - ending their worst stretch of form for six years.

The match-winner is one of a small number of PNE players to follow their father in playing for the club, after dad Archie served the club with honour from 1967 to 1970 before going on to find fame with Derby, Nottingham Forest and Scotland.

Other father and son North Enders include the two Alan Kellys, Sam and Craig Allardyce and Glen and Sam Johnstone.

The most recent win on this date came in the 2015 promotion season when the Lilywhites moved seven points clear in the automatic promotion places in League One with a home win over Rochdale.

The visitors started brightly at Deepdale and had a goal ruled out for offside after Rhys Bennett headed home Ian Henderson's flick-on, however, after PNE winger Callum Robinson shot straight at the goalkeeper when one-on-one, Jermaine Beckford's smart turn and low shot put the hosts ahead.

Henderson wasted a free header six yards out as Dale pressed to level, whilst Dale full back Andy Cannon's cross was turned onto the post and Joe Garner nearly doubled North End’s lead at the other end with a stooping header.

Simon Grayson's North End side were then unbeaten in their last 12 league games and had closed the gap on leaders Bristol City to eight points.

Centre half John Bird made his North End debut on this date in 1971, having signed from hometown club Doncaster Rovers.

The dominating defender quickly established himself as a fans favourite and made 189 appearances over the next four years. His transfer to Newcastle United in 1975, in a deal that saw striker Alex Bruce return to Deepdale after 18 months in the north east, led to the resignation of manager Bobby Charlton, who saw Bird as a key member of his side. Since retiring, John has set up a very successful art gallery near Doncaster.

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