Learn more about Championship side Preston North End, as Southampton’s pre-season plans continue to take shape…
WHERE DO THEY PLAY?
With the addition of the Invincibles Pavilion Stand in 2008, most of Deepdale Stadium has had a re-build since the turn of the century.
It’s widely credited as being the oldest 'continuously used' professional football stadium in the world (although some dispute that). It's now an all-seater stadium with a total capacity of 23,404.
HOW DID THEY DO LAST SEASON?
A run of eight wins from 12 unbeaten games at the turn of the year had put the Lilywhites on course for a play-off place last season, before a downturn around Easter ruled them out of the race entirely.
They dropped mid-table to 14th, winning one of their final five games, and finished a point above Blackburn Rovers who suffered a similar fate, having also flirted with the top six at points in the season.
WHO IS THEIR MANAGER?
Alex Neil signed a new three-year deal at Preston in April 2019, putting an end to speculation linking him with a potential move to West Bromwich Albion.
The Scot, 38, was appointed in July 2017 following the departure of Simon Grayson, and guided the club to seventh in the Championship during 2017/18, narrowly missing out on the play-offs by two points.
Last season wasn't quite as productive after a limp end to the campaign, but the former Hamilton and Norwich boss will be intent on bettering that next season, having committed his immediate future and built a young squad full of potential.
WHO IS THE PLAYER TO LOOK OUT FOR?
Callum Robinson, a Republic of Ireland international, finished as Preston’s most prolific performer in 2018/19, despite only playing 28 games.
He spent a large chunk of the season on the sidelines with a hamstring injury, but still managed to muster 13 goals and four assists from a wide position.
Linked with a move to the Premier League this summer, the 24-year-old was described by manager Neil as Preston’s ‘talisman’ last term, with his form earning his first senior Ireland app back in September.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Saints last met Preston in a third round League Cup tie in September 2011 at St Mary’s, where Nigel Adkins’s side were 2-1 victors. Adam Lallana and Jos Hooiveld were among the goals.
- Southampton's last visit to Deepdale was for a Championship clash in November 2008, which Saints edged 3-2, having gone two behind. Alex Pearce, Drew Surman and David McGoldrick were all on target.