By Jack Portley – Deputy Sports Editor
PNE claimed a 1-1 draw with Stoke City in a pre-season friendly on Saturday afternoon.
A deflected strike from midfielder Daniel Johnson put the Lillywhites in front but half-time substitute Mame Biram Diouf equalised for the visitors.
The hosts started with more energy than their Premier League opponents and that pressure soon resulted in a goal within the opening 10 minutes.
After a neat one-two, Johnson fired from the edge of the box and his effort took a slight deflection, wrong-footing Jack Butland in the Stoke net.
The visitors had a few blocked free-kicks but their best chance fell to Marko Arnautovic. The Austrian was played in on goal by Bojan but from a tight angle he couldn’t steer his effort on target.
Just before the break the home side nearly doubled their lead. Striker Joe Garner tried an audacious effort from just inside the Stoke half which was palmed wide by Butland. Then, from the resulting corner Paul Huntington saw his header clip the near post and go wide.
The Potters nearly equalised almost immediately after the restart, Bojan’s jinking run ended with the little Spaniard crashing his effort off the post.
The away side were a different team after the break and they soon equalised through Diouf. Bojan clipped a ball over the top of the North End defence and Diouf took his time and buried it past Lindegaard.
Preston nearly regained the lead moments later though. Ben Pringle’s cross found Garner whose goal-bound diving header was tipped away by Butland.
Peter Crouch had a few headed chances that went wide but it was Preston who went closest to nicking the game. John Welsh’s cross found Callum Robinson at the back post but his looping header only hit the bar.
The visitors had a few chances near the end through Julian N’Goye and Diouf but neither took them and the game fizzled out to an entertaining draw.