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Blackburn0Preston1

Blackburn Rovers 0-1 Preston North End: Daniel Johnson scores Preston winner

Preston keeper Declan Rudd makes a save during the first half against Blackburn
Preston's Declan Rudd was the busier of the two goalkeepers at Ewood Park

Daniel Johnson's early strike settled a passionate Lancashire derby as play-off-chasing Preston North End stretched their unbeaten run to 10 games with victory over Blackburn Rovers.

Preston led inside nine minutes when Johnson found the top corner with a fine first-time strike from Lukas Nmecha's pass.

Rovers, who are now winless in seven matches, then had the better of the chances at Ewood Park, but only managed four shots on target.

A combination of some wayward Rovers finishing and smart goalkeeping by Declan Rudd ensured a fourth win in six for North End, who had Darnell Fisher sent off for a second caution deep into stoppage time.

The result from the lunchtime kick-off took Alex Neil's side up to eighth and to within three points of the play-off places, although they slipped down to ninth - four points adrift of the top six after the later games.

Adam Armstrong had already dragged a low shot wide for Blackburn before Preston took the lead with their first chance through Johnson's second goal in as many matches.

Alan Browne curled a shot over for the visitors in a rare attack but the hosts then got on top.

Elliott Bennett was twice off target with attempts, Bradley Dack fired wide and miscued a volley, while Danny Graham had a header well saved by Rudd.

Armstrong also had an attempt cleared off the line and Rovers remained the more likely scorers after the interval.

Preston came close to doubling their lead when Browne and Paul Gallagher linked up, with the latter forcing a fine save by David Raya after a strong surge towards goal.

But the away side did not need the security of a second goal, with Fisher's late dismissal the only blemish as they completed a league double over their local rivals.

Blackburn boss Tony Mowbray:

"The attributes of this team are there on show every week. I think the performance is what we've had all season. At this moment, we're not able to turn them into goals and victories.

"Performance-wise, effort, honesty and commitment were all there. The bit that makes the difference - bit of quality around the edge of the box, the final pass, contact on a finish, obviously wasn't there.

"Ultimately, I can't be too harsh on them. We have to stick together and keep going. If I saw a drop-off on desire and determination to get results, I'd be more concerned.

"I don't see a drop-off but we've hit a patch where we can't win a game. What's the answer? Keep working hard, and it'll turn."

Preston manager Alex Neil:

"To keep the dream alive, we needed to come here and win the game.

"We started really well. From five minutes to 20, we came into the game, played on top of them. The one real quality move we made we scored the goal, which was excellent.

"After that, we sat a little deeper, absorbed pressure and hit Blackburn on the counter. Although they had a lot of the ball and pressure, I don't think they had a lot of clear-cut chances.

"It wasn't vintage Preston shall we say, but the three points are the most important thing."

Line-ups

Blackburn

  • 1Raya
  • 2Nyambe
  • 14MulgrewSubstituted forBellat 72'minutes
  • 3Williams
  • 4ReedBooked at 60minsSubstituted forNuttallat 63'minutes
  • 6SmallwoodSubstituted forRothwellat 72'minutes
  • 29EvansBooked at 58mins
  • 31Bennett
  • 23Dack
  • 10Graham
  • 7Armstrong

Substitutes

  • 8Rothwell
  • 13Leutwiler
  • 17Bell
  • 19Brereton
  • 24Nuttall
  • 27Travis
  • 32Conway

Preston

  • 1Rudd
  • 2FisherBooked at 90mins
  • 14Storey
  • 6Davies
  • 16Hughes
  • 18Ledson
  • 45NmechaSubstituted forRaffertyat 90+5'minutes
  • 8Browne
  • 11Johnson
  • 12GallagherSubstituted forStockleyat 77'minutes
  • 24MaguireSubstituted forBarkerat 83'minutes

Substitutes

  • 3Earl
  • 13Crowe
  • 15Rafferty
  • 17Ginnelly
  • 20Stockley
  • 21Barker
  • 23Huntington
Referee:
Oliver Langford
Attendance:
21,577

Match Stats

Home TeamBlackburnAway TeamPreston
Possession
Home56%
Away44%
Shots
Home20
Away6
Shots on Target
Home5
Away3
Corners
Home8
Away5
Fouls
Home11
Away7

Live Text

Match ends, Blackburn Rovers 0, Preston North End 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Blackburn Rovers 0, Preston North End 1.

Attempt saved. Adam Armstrong (Blackburn Rovers) with an attempt from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Amari'i Bell with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Preston North End. Joseph Rafferty replaces Lukas Nmecha.

Dismissal

Second yellow card to Darnell Fisher (Preston North End) for a bad foul.

Amari'i Bell (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Darnell Fisher (Preston North End).

Elliott Bennett (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Lukas Nmecha (Preston North End).

Attempt saved. Adam Armstrong (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Derrick Williams.

Attempt missed. Derrick Williams (Blackburn Rovers) left footed shot from the left side of the box misses to the right.

Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Ryan Nyambe.

Attempt blocked. Alan Browne (Preston North End) header from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Daniel Johnson with a cross.

Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Ryan Nyambe.

Attempt blocked. Bradley Dack (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Amari'i Bell.

Derrick Williams (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Jayden Stockley (Preston North End).

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Ryan Ledson.

Attempt blocked. Joe Nuttall (Blackburn Rovers) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Adam Armstrong.

Substitution

Substitution, Preston North End. Brandon Barker replaces Sean Maguire.

Booking

Darnell Fisher (Preston North End) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Danny Graham (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Darnell Fisher (Preston North End).

Corner, Blackburn Rovers. Conceded by Declan Rudd.

Substitution

Substitution, Preston North End. Jayden Stockley replaces Paul Gallagher.

Elliott Bennett (Blackburn Rovers) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Alan Browne (Preston North End).

Foul by Adam Armstrong (Blackburn Rovers).

Darnell Fisher (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Ryan Nyambe.

Substitution

Substitution, Blackburn Rovers. Joe Rothwell replaces Richard Smallwood.

Substitution

Substitution, Blackburn Rovers. Amari'i Bell replaces Charlie Mulgrew because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Charlie Mulgrew (Blackburn Rovers) because of an injury.

Foul by Danny Graham (Blackburn Rovers).

Jordan Storey (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) right footed shot from a difficult angle on the left is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Sean Maguire.

Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Charlie Mulgrew.

Attempt blocked. Lukas Nmecha (Preston North End) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box is blocked. Assisted by Daniel Johnson.

Foul by Elliott Bennett (Blackburn Rovers).

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich36219672452772
2Leeds36217860382270
3Sheff Utd36208861342768
4West Brom361710968482061
5Middlesbrough351513739261358
6Derby361510114644255
7Bristol City35159114437754
8Nottm Forest361314950401053
9Preston361312115549651
10Birmingham35121495345850
11Hull36148145051-150
12Brentford3513101260471349
13Sheff Wed361213114249-749
14Aston Villa35111596153848
15Swansea35138144543247
16Stoke361015113742-545
17Blackburn361111144756-944
18QPR36127174255-1343
19Reading36812164053-1336
20Wigan3699183652-1636
21Millwall36810183955-1634
22Rotherham36615153758-2133
23Bolton3678212456-3229
24Ipswich36313202860-3222
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