Preston North End 1, Burnley 2

The Bill Shankly Stand at Deepdale will serve as a constant reminder to the success of the Clarets for some time.

Tuesday, 25th July 2017, 10:49 pm
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 12:54 pm

There might not have been the same noise or animation emanating from the single tier build for the pre-season friendly against Preston North End but you can still envisage those wild scenes of celebration from 15 months ago.

Joey Barton's deflected set-piece was the decider on that occasion as Sean Dyche's side closed in on a return to the Premier League with both Middlesbrough and Brighton hanging on their coat tails.

This fixture was less competitive, far less intense or atmospheric, but there was no let up from the Burnley boss or his players as they prepare for a second successive season in the top flight.

The hosts, now under the management of former Norwich City boss Alex Neil, started brightly with Eoin Doyle and new man Josh Harrop going close but the visitors soon found their swagger.

The Clarets took the lead midway through the first half when defender Tom Anderson headed Robbie Brady's free kick back across goal to gift Jon Walters his second goal for his new club with a tap in.

North End stopper Chris Maxwell was kept busy as the half progressed, saving well from both Johann Berg Gudmundsson and Anderson, while Jack Cork, who netted here six years ago, sliced wide from the edge of the box.

The Lilywhites threatened again early in the second half when Daryl Horgan's bending effort whistled by the upright but again the away side responded positively.

Walters was denied a second when his header from Matt Lowton's cross came back off the inside of the post before Brady slammed the rebound in to the side-netting.

The Clarets, though, did extend their lead 10 minutes in to the second half when Kevin Long capitalised on the home side's aerial frailties to power a header from Brady's corner past Maxwell.

Substitute Kevin O'Connor should've done better when Anderson's foul on Ben Pringle gifted the hosts a free kick central to goal on the edge of the box. However, the resulting effort travelled hopelessly wide.

Sean Maguire did halve the deficit in the 66th minute when dispossessing Steven Defour before firing low past Pope while Alan Browne and Horgan went closest to finding an equaliser in the closing stages.