Preston North End ace Ben Whiteman has paid tribute to Cameron Archer after his performance for Middlesbrough on Saturday.

PNE went on the road to Teesside on Saturday afternoon and were seeking a win on Gentry Day.

North End went into the game unbeaten in seven and hoping to spring a shock – but it just wasn’t to be.

Chuba Akpom scored the opener from Cameron Archer’s pass before Archer turned goalscorer, bagging two in the second half.

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Marcus Forss added a fourth to compound PNE’s misery, sending Ryan Lowe’s men home empty-handed.

This was all about Archer, who was just bound to find the net against North End.

The Aston Villa loanee spent the second half of last season on loan at PNE and become a fan favourite.

Whilst PNE wanted a summer return, a deal couldn’t be agreed and Archer ended up picking a January move to Boro.

This was Archer’s first game against North End and he showed PNE what they are missing.

Archer scored with two fine finishes against PNE, giving Freddie Woodman no chance.

This kind of quality has been lacking in the North End attack for much of this season and fans would no doubt love to have Archer back at Deepdale.

Middlesbrough v Preston North End - Sky Bet Championship
Photo by Lee Parker – CameraSport via Getty Images

PNE ace Whiteman offered his view to Lancs Live and heaped praise on Archer for his performance.

The pair played together at PNE last season and Whiteman noted that Archer was ‘excellent’ on Saturday whilst highlighting the huge gulf between North End and Boro right now.

Whiteman also hailed Boro boss Michael Carrick, seemingly feeling that North End have some way to go before reaching that kind of level.

“There has been a massive upturn in performance, but today is a massive down,” said Whiteman. “You need to come to these places – if you’re aspiring to get in and around the play-offs – and put in a performance more than anything. I don’t think we did that today. It’s that added quality – you play the first 15 or 20 minutes and think that a point would probably be a good result here.”

“We are not kidding ourselves; we see how long we can keep it 0-0 and then try to nick something from a set-piece. But, they have got two players at the top of the pitch who are flying at the minute. We’ve all seen how good Cammy Archer is and he was excellent again today. (Michael Carrick) played at the top level for Man United and he is going to be a top manager. He has turned them right round, so credit to them and their staff – they were good today and the miles better team,” he added.

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