Preston North End boss: I’d have settled for 3-1 scoreline at Den before a ball had been kicked

BY RICHARD CAWLEY

Alex Neil reckons his Preston North End side were unlucky not to be further ahead by half-time at The Den – feeling they pulled Millwall apart.

The visitors were 3-0 up before the half-hour mark.

Neil said: “It was certainly one of our best performances in a first half. Probably in the last seven matches we have started really, really well.

“I thought we took Millwall apart in the first half, we could’ve scored more than three.

“Naturally they are going to have a reply. Neil [Harris] was going to get into them and demand more.

“The only disappointing thing in the second half is that we probably need to show a bit more composure, I think we tried to turn the ball too much.”

Neil rejected the suggestion that Millwall were jaded from their Wednesday night exertions – winning 1-0 at Derby County.

North End, by contrast, did not have a midweek match.

“Strangely enough they showed a lot of energy in the second half,” said the Scot. “So I don’t think you can put it [racing into a commanding lead] just down to that.

“If they got tired as the game went on it’s certainly a factor – but they got stronger in the second half. We just played really well, moved the ball well. We knew when to pass it and when to turn it.

“If you had offered me 3-1 before the start of the game then I’d definitely have taken that, because it’s a difficult place to come.”