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Watford supporters team endure tough start to the season away to champions Preston
12:13pm Monday 17th September 2012 in Sport
Hornets supporters' first game of the season ended in a 6-1 defeat to IFA champions Preston although the scoreline was harsh on the visitors.
Having travelled with just nine men, Preston loaned their striker Des Wilson to even up the sides and allow WIFC to remain competitive.
The team worked hard to keep the champions at bay, while always looking to keep the ball, which meant WIFC were able to fashion a few half-chances through Dave Soloway and Moz Clarke.
However, the pressure took it’s toll and Preston opened the scoring just after the half hour, adding another before the break.
After a swap of loanees, with midfielder Jimmy Atkinson joining the visitors at the interval, the second half followed the same pattern.
Dogged defending and good use of the ball kept WIFC in the game and further half chances fell to debutant Paul Norgate and Dave Soloway.
But tired legs and Preston’s good use of the ball finally combined to see Preston rattle in four quickfire strikes.
WIFC got some reward for their efforts in the closing minutes, when man of the match Scott Mathers powerfully headed a Norgate corner into the roof of the net.
Preston’s experienced midfielder Steve Cowell offered praise to the visitors after the match.
“There was nothing between the two teams for the first 30 to 35 mins for me,” said Cowell.
“But the big pitch and lack of numbers finally took their toll on the lads from Watford, but they never let their heads drop and always tried to play their way out of trouble”.
WIFC: Rich Walker, Dave Messenger, Martin Pollard, Scott Mathers, Phil McBride, Paul Norgate, Dave Soloway, Maurice Clarke, Des Wilson (Jimmy Atkinson), Jeremy Hinds.