Preston North End faced high flying Nottingham Forest desperate to put the defeat to Reading behind them.
Steve Cooper’s side arrived full of confidence, being one of the in form sides in the Championship as well as recently knocking out Arsenal and Leicester City of the FA Cup.
In truth Preston dominated the majority of the match but just couldn’t find the back of the net despite some glorious chances.
Forest will be delighted with the point as they looked below par but Preston could have won by three or four on another day.
Hughes is in the best spell of his North End career
Andrew Hughes lined up at left-wing back at the start of the game on Tuesday as Ryan Lowe went with his tenth different option in one of the wide roles since his arrival 14 games ago. Hughes has been in great form pretty much all season so there wasn’t much doubt he would do a good job there.
Hughes has been defensively sound both on the ground and aerially but also likes to get forward and cut inside as well as provide the overlap option. He has a great cross on him as well and can be a danger from set pieces. He is one of the first names on the teamsheet at the moment.
He’s really found his feet in his fourth season with the club and looks to be enjoying his game. Long may it continue. The Welshman must surely be on the radar of an international call up at this rate too?
A superb game from Potts
Brad Potts was clearly disappointed at being hooked in the first half against Reading last weekend. A change was needed and he was the unfortunate casualty. It was undeserved because he’s really found some form on the right hand side under Lowe. He’s a strong runner who never seems to tire. A great example of that was his lung bursting run in the last minute against Sheffield United that created the equaliser.
Particularly in the second half on Tuesday he was a thorn in the Forest side. Up against the talented Max Lowe he created a lot of chances including the one on the plate for Cameron Archer which he should have finished with ease.
Potts also tracked back well when he needed to and limited any Forest venture forward. He now encapsulates what a Ryan Lowe team is all about. A clear man of the match on Tuesday and firmly appreciated by the fans, finally.
Perhaps we got Liam Lindsay wrong
Liam Lindsay was a solid loan addition in a time of need last season. We had lost Ben Davies and Darnell Fisher and Patrick Bauer was out injured. Lindsay did a job after arriving from Stoke City but I don’t think too many were too excited when he joined permanently.
The return of Bauer, and the form of Sepp van den Berg and Hughes meant that chances were at a premium for the Scotsman up until now. Tuesday was just his 8th start of the season but recent games against Millwall and Reading had shown that he was ready to take his chance.
A big defender is quite often classed as someone who isn’t good on the ball. Lindsay is calm though and is capable of carrying the ball forward and picking the right pass. Up against two talented players in Brennan Johnson and Keinan Davis, Lindsay showed he is experienced at this level and can certainly do a job. After Bauer left the pitch after taking a knock, Lindsay could be set for a more sustained run in the side.
Van den Berg kept Davis in his pocket all night
Keinan Davis gave a Leicester City defence a torrid time in the FA Cup a few weeks ago. On Tuesday he came up against a fellow Aston Villa loanee in Cameron Archer. It was Archer who edged the battle despite not being able to hit the bullseye. His glaring miss will be a learning curve for him.
However after Sepp van den Berg’s rare poor showing in the last match he made sure he didn’t follow it up with another one. Forest has scored 12 in their previous five matches but van den Berg played his part in a clean sheet. He was back to his usual self and despite Davis battling away for 80 minutes he had no joy.
Just 12 games are left of the Dutchman’s Preston career. I don’t think you’ll find many loan spells in the past where the player and fans have enjoyed one another so much.