Preston 2-0 Town - Report
In the opening exchanges of the game played before a crowd of 12,087 the home side's Ross Wallace fouled Town full back Liam Rosenior with Jack Colback's resulting free kick resulting in a comfortable save for North End keeper Andy Lonergan.
Shortly after Town were handed a great chance with Jon Stead and Liam Rosenior linking up well, before Stead put Rosenior through with a clear run on goal, only for the full back to wastefully fire a right foot drive over the bar from 15 yards out.
Richard Chaplow was the first player of the game to enter referee Jon Moss' notebook, after being booked for a badly timed challenge on Town's David Norris on the half hour mark.
Tamas Priskin, recalled to the squad in the place of Spaniard Pablo Counago had the ball in the net for Town early in the second half, only for a linesmans flag to rule the goal out for offside and curb Town's celebrations.
Town were not to be the only ones to have a goal disallowed however, soon after Priskin's disallowed goal, North End's David Mellor rounded Arran Lee-Barrett before slotting home, only to see his strike disallowed as the originating free kick had been taking whilst the ball was rolling.
Neil Collins replaced former Derby defender Youl Mawene just shy of the hour mark and the Scottish defender on loan from Wolves proved the ideal substitute as he put the home side ahead just five minutes later.
Former Burnley midfielder Richard Chaplow set in a well directed cross after 64 minutes with Collins making no mistake and nodding the ball past Arran Lee-Barrett and putting the home side a goal to the good.
Town sub Pablo Counago nearly also had an immediate impact on the game, and within barely a minute of coming on found fellow striker Jon Stead on the edge of the box, with Town's joint top scorer forcing a good low save from Lonergan between the sticks.
With five minutes remaining on the clock Preston doubled their lead with Danny Welbeck, playing in his first game for the home side having joined on loan from Manchester United until the end of the season, chipping the ball over Lee-Barrett to clinch all three points for the home side.
The result leaves Town in 21st place in the Coca-Cola Championship, just one place above the drop zone and 3 points ahead of Reading who occupy the place directly below Town in the league table whilst Plymouth are two points further back but have a game in hand.