Alan Browne said he and his team-mates were understandably ‘buzzing’ after his 96th-minute winner gave Preston North End all three points with a 1-0 win at Pride Park.
The Republic of Ireland international curled a beautiful strike into the top left corner with what was almost the final kick of the game at Pride Park, after a largely frustrating afternoon in which the Lilywhites battled against Derby County’s ten men.
But the No.8’s telling contribution right at the death ensured the visitors’ emotions were sky high at full-time.
“That’s what football is all about, the highs and the lows,” Browney told iFollow PNE. “You can’t get too down and you can’t get too high when you win.
“We’ll enjoy it because obviously winning the game like we did, you obviously get a buzz from it, and hopefully it can kickstart our season now and we can use that momentum going forward.”
The Rams had been reduced to ten men after just 20 minutes, following Martyn Waghorn’s reckless challenge on Browne, and the midfielder revealed after the game that Derby’s change in style as a result of that dismissal made for a tough afternoon.
“It is tough against ten men, people might think it’s a lot easier than what it is, but certainly when you go down to ten men you’re a lot more compact, it’s hard to use penetrating passes against those ten men because they just sit off.
“It can often be difficult. Unless you score early, it’s always going to be a tough game. In the end, I kind of felt sorry for them because they worked that hard with ten men, everyone knows how hard it is. To concede in the manner they did is obviously heart-breaking for them given the situation they’re in, but for us it’s massive and we’re all pleased with it.”
“If my foot’s planted, it could potentially be bad,” he added, speaking of the challenge. “I thought it was a red card at the time, I don’t think he intended me to hurt me, but it’s a red. We were probably doing better until he got sent off so it kind of gave them the chance to just sit in, soak up the pressure and try to nick one, but thankfully, we got one late on.”
Browney credited team-mate Ryan Ledson for his role in the winner, but having now scored on Boxing Day in each of the past three seasons – at home to Hull City in 2018/19, away to Leeds United last term and now at Pride Park – the midfielder joked that someone closer to home was playing a role in his goalscoring exploits over the festive season!
“Ledo made a great run, so hats off to Ledo, he burst his gut to get back past me. I think that’s the second year in a row now where I’ve scored after my Christmas dinner, my missus has already text me reminding me of that! I’m obviously buzzing with it.”
Watch more from Browney by clicking on the video above.