Match: Preston North End v Aston Villa
Date: Saturday 29th December 2018
Competition: Sky Bet Championship
Nyland; Elmohamady, Bree, Chester, Hutton; Whelan (Bjarnason, 75), Hourihane, McGinn; El Ghazi, Abraham, Bolasie (Adomah, 68). UNUSED SUBS: Bunn, Hogan, Davis, Kodjia, Revan.
Story in brief
Aston Villa had to settle for a point in our last outing of 2018 as we drew 1-1 at Preston North End.
Tammy Abraham opened the scoring in the final moments of the first half as he headed home Glenn Whelan’s beautiful, pinpoint cross.
Our advantage could have been doubled at the start of the second half but John McGinn’s effort was too high.
Former Villan Daniel Johnson was in trouble with the referee as he received a yellow card – and then a firm talking to alongside his captain Tom Clarke.
And, ironically, it was Johnson who set up the leveller as his ball from the right on 61 minutes was bundled home from Lukas Nmecha.
That ushered in a period of dominance from the hosts but it was the visitors who finished the game much stronger, knocking on the door time after time but just failing to knock it down, Anwar El Ghazi the chief tormentor and Birkir Bjarnason with the ultimate chance at the death.
Abraham the Ace
There’s no denying Tammy Abraham’s goalscoring prowess in the claret and blue shirt.
His opener at Deepdale ensured he hit 14 goals for the season so far.
That’s just six short of Peter Withe’s 20 goal haul from 1981 – the last time that feat was achieved.
It’ll be interesting to see how many he finishes on when the 2018/19 campaign concludes – and whether it ensures our promotion dream is realised.
The sight of 5,602 claret and blue fans backing the boys was one to behold at Deepdale.
We took our full allocation for this one – and could have sold many more if they’d been available.
The whole repertoire was on show throughout the 90 minutes – from El Ghazi having a party to Super John McGinn – magnificent as always!
We have our first game of the New Year as QPR arrive at Villa Park.
The match takes place on Tuesday 1st January, with a 3pm kick-off.
Tommy Elphick, who has returned from Hull City, is eligble to face Rangers as 2019 begins.