Phil Brown will not be pressing the panic button just yet but this was by far the most inept performance that Preston have given this season as they lacked any potency.
North End are always going to concede goals no matter who plays in the back four and they went behind early on as Nicholls turned Maclean inside out before firing home from outside the box to give the retruning Turner no chance.
Apart from that Turner was relatively untroubled for the rest of the match and Walsall were content with their one goal lead as Preston were so blunt in the first half especially.
The absence of Hume was critical meaning Preston resorted to a 4-4-2 with no wingers and the olders central midfield in history with Alexander and Ashbee who was hauled off at half time. They were lethargic at best.
Mellor also had to come off at half time after being injured in a tackle before the break so Mayor and Daley came on to support Proctor in a 4-3-3 formation. Daley was lively but never given the ball whilst Proctor showed the touch of a rhino and Brown will find it hard to win games if both Mellor and Hme are out long term.
The Whites wer taming rarely forcing the opposition keeper into a save. Walsall were reduced to ten men for the final half an hour for Martin's second booking. That didn't change anything as North End lacked width and creativity but when the ball came into the box Proctor fluffed his lines.
Proctor was so bad that Clarke Carlisle played up front for the last twenty minutes and posed more of a threat winning headers but the football was truly awful and a throw back to the Beck era with nothing on the deck. Hopefully, it was a one off otherwise Preston will slowly slide down the table.
Related Preston North End News