, PNE vs Hearts – Pre-Season Preview

PNE vs Hearts – Pre-Season Preview

The season’s over for now but don’t worry: coming up soon are the first pre-season friendlies for each club! 

In this article, I’ll be taking a look at one of the upcoming friendlies for Preston North End. On the 18th July, the Lilywhites will face off with SPL side Hearts and it will be a good chances for both teams to test out some new signings and younger players, while also giving PNE a chance to potentially test out some new tactics against a relatively strong opponent.

It could also prove to be good preparation for their return to the Championship.

Of course, friendlies are just light-hearted affairs but as the wait for the new season continues, it is a good football fix to tide fans over until the real season begins. You can read more betting advice here.

Prediction

Preston are coming off the back of promotion to the Championship – via the play-offs as well – and the players will no doubt be excited to get out on the Deepdale pitch again.

But so are Hearts, who are back in the Scottish Premier League after claiming promotion from the Scottish Championship last season, finishing in first place.

Therefore it could make for an interesting match. Preston will be able to try out Gallagher and Beckford at their home ground for the first time since the two signed permanent deals at the club, so there is sure to be a lot of cheers from home fans if they do make an appearance.

So – who do I think will win? Preston were very strong last year and had a solid defence and a prolific attack – the only possible difference in this game could be if the Lilywhites try out younger players (Jack Ryan, Nick Anderton or Steven James could feature for example) and PNE are also currently without last year’s number one shot-stopper, Sam Johnstone.

Hearts will also be weakened – Género Zeefuik, who was the club’s top scorer last year, has returned to his parent club after a loan spell and, unless he re-signs before this friendly, it leaves Hearts hoping that Osman Sow can produce some goals as he did last year.

I feel as if Preston will snatch the win here but I expect there to be quite a few goals scored: Preston will most likely have a reserve keeper in goal and it’s also likely that a few reserve defenders could start.

Predicted score: 2-1 to Preston.

Both teams to score and Preston NE to win could therefore be a good bet.

First goalscorer – Paul Gallagher. Bit of a longshot but I expect at least one of the two permanent signings to bag a goal on their first game back at Deepdale. Of the two, I feel Gally could be the one to put the ball in the back of the net first (don’t forget, he does take penalties as well!)

Looking for more tips and information this season? There is more betting advice here.

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