Preston North End F.C.

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
(Redirected from Preston North End F.C)
Jump to: navigation, search
Preston North End
Full name Preston North End Football Club
Nickname(s) The Lilywhites, The Invincibles[1]
Founded 1880; 139 years ago (1880)[2]
Ground Deepdale
Ground Capacity 23,404[3]
Chairman Peter Ridsdale[4]
Manager Simon Grayson[5]
League Championship
2015–16 Championship, 11th
Website Club home page
Current season

Preston North End Football Club (often shortened to PNE) is a professional association football club located in the Deepdale area of Preston, Lancashire. They play in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system.

The club was a founding member of the Football League and completed the inaugural season unbeaten to become the first league champions, in the same season winning the FA Cup without conceding a goal to become the first club to achieve the English football "Double". Preston's unbeaten League and Cup season earned them the nickname "The Invincibles".

Preston's most recent major trophy success was their FA Cup victory over Huddersfield Town in 1938. Many notable players have played for the club, including Tom Finney, Bill Shankly, Tommy Docherty, Alan Kelly, Sr. and Graham Alexander.

Based on results achieved in the Football League from 1888–89 to 2014–15, Preston were ranked as the fourth most-successful English football club of all time domestically, while only Notts County had played more Football League games than Preston.[6]


Preston North End was originally founded as a cricket club in 1863, by Mr Walter Pomfret of Deepdale Road, who was the first person to rent the field on which North End has always played. The original rent was £8 per year. As Preston already had a strong town's club, they adopted the "North End" suffix because they moved to the North End of the town when Moor Park opened, playing their matches at Moor Park. Prior to that they played at Bow Lane. The club adopted rugby union code in 1877, but one year later they played their first game under the rules of association football, and in May 1880 unanimously passed a resolution to adopt the association code.[2]

Preston North End were famously successful during the early years of professional football in England. In 1887, Preston beat Hyde 26–0 in the First Round of the FA Cup, still a record winning margin in English first-class football. Preston forward Jimmy Ross scored eight goals in the match, going on to score 19 goals in the competition that season, also still a record.[7]

In 1888–89, they became the first league champions and the first winners of "The Double", becoming the only team to date to go throughout an entire season unbeaten in both the league and FA Cup – winning the FA Cup without conceding a goal.[8]

Preston were league champions again the following season, but have not won the title since. The club's last major trophy was an FA Cup triumph in 1938.

Preston North End in 1888–89, the first Football League champions, subsequently doing 'The Double'

Preston's most famous player, Sir Tom Finney, played for the club between 1946 and 1960. Finney is considered to be one of the greatest footballers of all time, and was also a local lad, dubbed the "Preston Plumber" due to his professional training as a plumber. Finney remains the club's top goalscorer, with 187 goals from 433 appearances, and also scored 30 international goals for England.

Following Finney's retirement, Preston were relegated to the Second Division in 1961 and have not played in the top division since. The club did reach the FA Cup final in 1964, but lost to West Ham United.

Preston were relegated to the Third Division in the 1969–70 season, but won promotion back as champions at the first attempt. Alan Ball, Sr., then manager, remarked that "Preston's fans are the best, they are the Gentry", and the club now designates one away fixture each season as "Gentry Day", intended for remembrance of deceased fans and players, which Preston fans attend in fancy dress, wearing bowler hats and gentleman's suits.[9][10][11]

Among others, World Cup winners Bobby Charlton and Nobby Stiles would manage the club during the 1970s and 80s, with varying degrees of success, but the overall trajectory was one of steady decline, and the club eventually fell into the Fourth Division for the first time in its history in 1985, finishing second bottom of the entire league the following season, and only avoiding relegation into the Football Conference via re-election.

John McGrath oversaw Preston's promotion back to the Third Division a year later, where they remained when John Beck took over in October 1992. The 38-year-old Beck had only recently been sacked by Cambridge United, where he had achieved two successive promotions and come close to attaining a unique third into the top flight. Preston hoped his "long ball" philosophy might work for them too, but Beck was unable to save Preston from relegation during his first season, and after defeat in the play-off final a year later, he was replaced by his assistant Gary Peters.

After signing strikers Andy Saville and Steve Wilkinson, Peters successfully guided Preston to the Division Three title in his first full season as manager, eventually quitting in February 1998, to be replaced by 34-year-old defender David Moyes.

Under David Moyes, Preston were Division Two champions in 2000, and narrowly missed out on promotion to the Premier League the following season.

Captained by Sean Gregan and featuring such players as Jon Macken, Graham Alexander and David Eyres, Preston quickly developed into Division Two promotion contenders under Moyes, reaching the 1998–99 play-offs, before being promoted as champions the following year. The club almost made it two promotions in a row to reach the Premier League, but lost to Bolton Wanderers in the 2001 play-off final. Moyes left for Everton the following season, and despite successive play-off campaigns under Billy Davies – when the team included Youl Mawéné, David Healy and England international David Nugent, the first Preston player to win a full England cap since Tom Finney in 1958 – and another play-off attempt under Alan Irvine, Preston were unable to achieve promotion to the Premier League during a ten-year spell in the second tier.

A succession of unsuccessful managerial appointments, starting with Darren Ferguson and ending with Graham Westley, saw the club relegated to League One and threatened with a further drop to the fourth tier after a club record run of 12 home games without a win under the latter's stewardship,[12] before an up-turn in fortunes began under current manager Simon Grayson, who was appointed in February 2013.

Preston reached the League One play-offs in Grayson's first full season, and finally won promotion to the Championship in May 2015, after beating Swindon Town 4–0 in the play-off final, including a hat-trick by Jermaine Beckford. The club had failed to achieve promotion in their previous nine appearances in the play-offs across all three divisions, a record at the time.[13]


Full name Deepdale Stadium
Location Sir Tom Finney Way, Preston, England, PR1 6RU
Coordinates Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Owner Preston North End F.C.
Operator Preston North End F.C.
Capacity 23,404 [3]
Field size 110 x 75 yards[14]
Built 1875
Renovated 1996–2009
Preston North End F.C. (1878–present)
Lancashire Lynx (1996–2000)

Deepdale Stadium was first leased by the club in 1875 and was first used for association football in 1878.[15] The biggest attendance seen was 42,684 for a Division One clash with Arsenal in April 1938.[14]

Following a complete reconstruction between 1996 and 2009, the stadium has a seated capacity of 23,404.[3] The current pitch dimensions are 110 x 75 yards.[14]


The stadium was the original location for the National Football Museum, which opened in 2001, recognising Deepdale's status as the world's oldest football league ground still in use.[16]

However, in 2010 the museum was controversially closed, to be relocated to Urbis in Manchester, where it reopened in 2012.[17][18] The move prompted Sir Tom Finney to withdraw his personal memorabilia from the museum in protest.[19]

Despite the museum's closure at Deepdale, the National Football Museum retained the long-term lease on its former site, which has since been used to store 90% of the museum's collection and as an "archive and research centre", but has otherwise remained vacant and closed to the public, despite periodic proposals to put the site to other uses.[19][20]


The Splash commemorates Preston legend Tom Finney.

Outside the Sir Tom Finney Stand, is a statue of the famous player himself, this is known as The Splash or the Tom Finney Splash.

The statue, unveiled in July 2004, was inspired by a photo taken at the Chelsea versus PNE game played at Stamford Bridge, in 1956.

The match took place on a rainy day, with Preston playing Chelsea and players generally sliding everywhere.

The statue was sculpted by Peter Hodgkinson.


As of 10 May 2016.

Current squad

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
3 Republic of Ireland DF Greg Cunningham
4 England MF Ben Pearson
5 England DF Tom Clarke (team captain)
6 Australia DF Bailey Wright
7 Jamaica MF Chris Humphrey
10 Jamaica FW Jermaine Beckford
11 Jamaica MF Daniel Johnson
12 Scotland MF Paul Gallagher
14 England FW Joe Garner
15 England DF Calum Woods
No. Position Player
16 Republic of Ireland MF Alan Browne
19 England MF John Welsh (club captain/team vice-captain)
20 England DF Ben Davies
23 England DF Paul Huntington
24 Scotland FW Stevie May
25 England FW Jordan Hugill
30 England DF Clive Smith
31 England MF Liam Grimshaw
40 England GK Matthew Hudson
Wales GK Chris Maxwell

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
22 England MF Josh Brownhill (at Barnsley until end of season)[21]

Former players

Technical staff

Below is a list of non-playing personnel:[22]

Name Role
Simon Grayson Manager
Glynn Snodin Assistant Manager
Steve Thompson First Team Coach
Alan Kelly, Jr. Goalkeeping Coach
Matt Jackson Head Physio
John Sumner Club Massuer
Nick Harrison Academy Manager
Ian Miller Chief Scout

Managerial history

As of 7 May 2016

The following is a list of Preston North End managers since 1986, excluding caretakers:[23][24]

Manager Nationality Period Total League
G W D L Win % G W D L Win % Point Av.
John McGrath  England 1986–1990 192 74 53 65 38.54 165 68 45 54 41.21 1.51
Les Chapman  England 1990–1992 129 44 30 55 34.11 118 39 29 50 33.05 1.24
John Beck  England 1992–1994 99 36 20 43 36.36 87 31 19 37 35.63 1.29
Gary Peters  England 1994–1998 166 72 42 52 43.37 143 63 37 43 44.06 1.58
David Moyes  Scotland 1998–2002 234 113 60 61 48.29 196 95 53 48 48.47 1.72
Craig Brown  Scotland 2002–2004 106 36 30 40 33.96 97 32 28 37 32.99 1.28
Billy Davies  Scotland 2004–2006 101 45 35 21 45.55 87 40 31 16 45.98 1.74
Paul Simpson  England 2006–2007 67 27 14 26 40.30 62 25 14 23 40.32 1.44
Alan Irvine  Scotland 2007–2009 110 45 25 40 40.90 99 40 24 35 40.40 1.45
Darren Ferguson  Scotland 2010 49 13 11 25 26.53 45 11 11 23 24.44 0.98
Phil Brown  England 2011 51 15 15 21 29.41 42 13 11 18 30.95 1.19
Graham Westley  England 2012–2013 62 16 23 23 25.81 52 11 21 20 21.15 1.04
Simon Grayson  England 2013– 184 85 60 39 46.20 152 68 53 31 44.74 1.69





In 1996, Preston's Third Division title made the club the third and most recent to have been champions of all four professional leagues in English football. This feat had previously been achieved only by Wolverhampton Wanderers in 1988 and local rivals Burnley in 1992.

Club records


Historically, Preston North End's main rivalry was with Blackpool. The West Lancashire derby between the two clubs has been contested nearly 100 times across all four divisions of the Football League since 1901.[30]

However, since Blackpool's relegation down to League Two in 2016, Preston's local rivals have been Burnley and fellow Championship side Blackburn Rovers.


The club's main sponsors since shirt sponsorship was introduced in 1979 have been as follows:[31]

Years Sponsor(s)
1979–1984 Pontins
1984–1985 David Leil
1985–1986 Lombard Continental
1986–1990 Garratt's Insurance
1990–1992 Ribble Valley Shelving
1992–1995 Coloroll
1995–2002 Baxi
2002–2005 New Reg
2005–2010 Enterprise
2010–2012 Tennent's
2012–2013 Magners
2013–2014 The Football Pools/Carers Trust[32]
2014– Virgin Trains[33]

Women's football

The affiliated women's football team is called Preston North End W.F.C., they currently play in the FA Women's Premier League Northern Division.

2013 Fans' All-Time XI


  1. PNEFC (15 October 2014). "Preston North End FC First Time Fans". PNEFC.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 History. "Preston North End FC History".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Ben Rhodes. "Deepdale Stadium".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. David Conn (3 October 2012). "Football League plans to examine Peter Ridsdale's role at Preston". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 May 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Simon Grayson Appointed Manager
  6. "England : All Time Table". Retrieved 29 July 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "FA Cup Heroes". The Football Association. Retrieved 10 July 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. In 2003–04, Arsenal also achieved an unbeaten season in the top flight, but they went out of the FA Cup at the semi-final stage.
  9. Digital Sports Group LTD. "Preston North End's Gentry Day".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Hats off to PNE's 'Gentry'".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "Index of /".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Ridsdale backing for Westley". Sky Sports. Retrieved 6 February 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Preston 4–0 Swindon" - BBC Sport, 24 May 2015
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 "North End Statistics". Preston North End FC. 3 April 2008. Archived from the original on 9 December 2008. Retrieved 22 November 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. "Deepdale Stadium". Preston North End FC. 23 July 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. Airey, Tom (6 July 2012), National Football Museum opens at new Manchester home, BBC News, retrieved 7 July 2012<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. Anger over football museum move, BBC News, 19 November 2009, retrieved 8 March 2014<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. Manchester's Urbis closes to become football museum, BBC News, 27 February 2010, retrieved 8 March 2014<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  19. 19.0 19.1 12,000 join campaign for Sir Tom Finney Museum, LEP, 19 February 2014, retrieved 8 March 2014<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  20. New lease of life for museum, LEP, 2 January 2013, retrieved 8 March 2014<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  21. "Josh Brownhill Extends Barnsley Stay". PNEFC. 1 February 2016. Retrieved 1 February 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  22. "Management profiles". Preston North End. Retrieved 19 May 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  23. "List of Preston North End F.C. Managers". Preston North End. Retrieved 19 May 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  24. "Preston Manager History - Past & Present - Soccer Base".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 25.3 Up until 1992, the top division of English football was the Football League First Division; since then, it has been the Premier League. Similarly until 1992, the Second Division was the second tier of league football, when it became the First Division, and is now known as The Championship. The third tier was the Third Division until 1992, and is now known as League One.
  26. 26.0 26.1 26.2 26.3 26.4 "Milestones". Preston North End FC. 3 January 2008. Archived from the original on 7 March 2009. Retrieved 22 November 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  27. Rhodes, Ben. "Preston North End FC History". Preston North End FC. Retrieved 20 March 2016.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  28. "Zibaka Breaks North End Record". League Football Education. 14 September 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  29. "Age is just a number – Graham Alexander". BBC Sport. 10 October 2011. Retrieved 27 November 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  30. "Blackpool's Head To Head Stats Against Any Team - Soccer Base".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  31. "Preston North End – Sponsors Through the Years". Retrieved 25 August 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  32. "Sponsorship Puts Charities First". PNE. 8 July 2013. Retrieved 10 July 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  33. "Preston North End Agree Virgin Trains Partnership". PNE. 5 August 2014. Retrieved 7 August 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  34. "Bruce & Nugent Complete Fans' Team". PNE. 7 August 2013. Retrieved 20 September 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links