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On This Day... 11th April

11 April 2020

Two former players who are remembered for very different careers at Deepdale share their birthdays today.

Gary Swann was born in York in 1962 and joined North End from Hull City in 1986. An attacking midfielder who was converted to full back, his speciality was to arrive late into the box and he had the finishing instincts of a striker.

A transfer fee of £5,000 was repaid many times over during his five and a half years at Deepdale, with an incredible 46 goals in exactly 250 games. Given how many of those games were at full back, his goalscoring is even more remarkable.

Amongst these was the fastest goal for the Lilywhites in many years as he converted after only 16 seconds versus Stockport County in 1987 - after our opponents had taken the kick-off!

Someone with much shorter PNE career was Doyle Middleton, whose 26th birthday falls today, but he still warrants a place in the record books.

In the League Cup tie at Stockport on 10th August 2010, he became the youngest player to appear for the club, aged only 16 years, 122 days. He made three substitute appearances that season and his only start came a year after his debut in a league match versus Exeter City.

Two more substitute appearances and his time at Deepdale was over, but he had made his mark on our history, although his place as our youngest player was taken by Brandon Zibaka, who was five days younger on his debut at Charlton Athletic the following year!

Our last win on this date came on 11th April 1998 when the match-winning hero was Gary Parkinson, firing home the only goal of a home game against Southend United at Deepdale.


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