Championship
Preston0Sheff Utd1

Preston 0-1 Sheffield United: Blades go second with win

David McGoldrick celebrating his goal for Sheffield United
David McGoldrick has now scored 13 goals in the Championship this season

Sheffield United returned to the automatic promotion places in the Championship following a narrow win over Preston North End.

The away side rose to second in the table, leapfrogging Leeds United, who lost 1-0 away to Birmingham City.

The Blades opened the scoring through David McGoldrick's tap-in after Preston keeper Declan Rudd had tipped John Egan's header onto the crossbar.

Sean Maguire went closest to equalising for the hosts, heading Louis Moult's cross narrowly wide in the 67th minute.

Preston started the brighter of the two sides, with Callum Robinson forcing a fine save from Dean Henderson after latching on to a poor backpass from United's John fleck.

But Sheffield United, returning from their 3-2 defeat against Bristol City last Saturday, have not lost consecutive Championship matches since losing their first two games this season and once McGoldrick opened the scoring Chris Wilder's side dominated proceedings.

Republic of Ireland international McGoldrick continued to impress, playing through Billy Sharp who was denied a 25th goal of the season by Rudd shortly after the restart.

Preston's Manchester City loanee Lukas Nmecha blasted a powerful second-half shot into the side netting, as the Blades held on for a eighth clean sheet in their past nine matches.

United are one point clear of Leeds in third place, while Preston's hopes of reaching the play-offs were dented, with Alex Neil's side now 10th and five points off sixth place.

Preston North End manager Alex Neil told BBC Radio Lancashire:

"The game was going to be decided on who limits their mistakes and who takes their opportunities when they come, because both teams had opportunities. We just didn't take our opportunities.

"If you watch the games at the top end of the Championship, the difference is taking your chances when they come along and limiting your mistakes.

"I don't think you can look and say we didn't try (or) we didn't play in a manner which would give us the best chance in the game."

Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder told BBC Radio Sheffield:

"It was always going to be tough, but it's not surprising in terms of the players' reaction. It's a special group of players and you could see how much they wanted this result today.

"It's a week in football, I've been in it long enough to know it can change really quickly and it can change back as well. There's still a long way to go, we'll just keep grinding away.

"They gave me a few heart attacks (during the game) and probably did the same for the supporters as well."

Line-ups

Preston

  • 1Rudd
  • 2Fisher
  • 14Storey
  • 6Davies
  • 3Earl
  • 18LedsonSubstituted forGallagherat 66'minutesBooked at 89mins
  • 4PearsonBooked at 36mins
  • 45NmechaSubstituted forStockleyat 76'minutes
  • 8BrowneBooked at 90mins
  • 7RobinsonSubstituted forMoultat 54'minutes
  • 24Maguire

Substitutes

  • 9Moult
  • 12Gallagher
  • 13Crowe
  • 15Rafferty
  • 17Ginnelly
  • 20Stockley
  • 23Huntington

Sheff Utd

  • 1Henderson
  • 12Egan
  • 6Basham
  • 3Stevens
  • 2Baldock
  • 16Norwood
  • 4Fleck
  • 8DowellBooked at 20minsSubstituted forCranieat 63'minutes
  • 21DuffySubstituted forStearmanat 78'minutes
  • 10SharpSubstituted forHoganat 84'minutes
  • 17McGoldrick

Substitutes

  • 11Hogan
  • 15Coutts
  • 18Freeman
  • 19Stearman
  • 25Moore
  • 28Cranie
  • 39Washington
Referee:
Gavin Ward
Attendance:
18,339

Match Stats

Home TeamPrestonAway TeamSheff Utd
Possession
Home54%
Away46%
Shots
Home11
Away15
Shots on Target
Home3
Away5
Corners
Home5
Away8
Fouls
Home7
Away16

Live Text

Match ends, Preston North End 0, Sheffield United 1.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Preston North End 0, Sheffield United 1.

Attempt missed. Jayden Stockley (Preston North End) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left. Assisted by Paul Gallagher with a cross following a corner.

Corner, Preston North End. Conceded by Enda Stevens.

Booking

Alan Browne (Preston North End) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Foul by Alan Browne (Preston North End).

Dean Henderson (Sheffield United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Attempt saved. Jordan Storey (Preston North End) header from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Darnell Fisher with a cross.

Booking

Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Darnell Fisher (Preston North End).

Enda Stevens (Sheffield United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Substitution

Substitution, Sheffield United. Scott Hogan replaces Billy Sharp.

Louis Moult (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Richard Stearman (Sheffield United).

Foul by Alan Browne (Preston North End).

Enda Stevens (Sheffield United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Darnell Fisher (Preston North End) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Foul by Enda Stevens (Sheffield United).

Sean Maguire (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by George Baldock (Sheffield United).

Substitution

Substitution, Sheffield United. Richard Stearman replaces Mark Duffy.

Attempt missed. Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) right footed shot from the left side of the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Sean Maguire.

Attempt blocked. Sean Maguire (Preston North End) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Jayden Stockley.

Substitution

Substitution, Preston North End. Jayden Stockley replaces Lukas Nmecha.

Attempt missed. Mark Duffy (Sheffield United) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right. Assisted by Oliver Norwood.

Alan Browne (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by John Egan (Sheffield United).

Foul by Paul Gallagher (Preston North End).

Enda Stevens (Sheffield United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Hand ball by Billy Sharp (Sheffield United).

Louis Moult (Preston North End) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Chris Basham (Sheffield United).

Attempt missed. Sean Maguire (Preston North End) header from very close range misses to the right. Assisted by Louis Moult with a cross.

Substitution

Substitution, Preston North End. Paul Gallagher replaces Ryan Ledson.

Attempt missed. Enda Stevens (Sheffield United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.

Attempt blocked. David McGoldrick (Sheffield United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is blocked. Assisted by George Baldock.

Ben Davies (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by David McGoldrick (Sheffield United).

Substitution

Substitution, Sheffield United. Martin Cranie replaces Kieran Dowell.

Darnell Fisher (Preston North End) wins a free kick on the right wing.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Norwich40259682483484
2Sheff Utd40238967373077
3Leeds402371066422476
4West Brom4020101075522370
5Aston Villa401615973561763
6Bristol City391711115142962
7Derby391612115548760
8Middlesbrough401513124136558
9Nottm Forest401415115547857
10Preston401512135953657
11Hull40169155957257
12Sheff Wed401414124954-556
13Swansea39158165249353
14Brentford401312156356751
15Stoke401118113842-451
16Blackburn401211175363-1047
17Birmingham401314135652444
18QPR40128204665-1944
19Wigan401011194359-1641
20Millwall391010194558-1340
21Reading40913184360-1740
22Rotherham40815174368-2539
23Bolton4088242966-3732
24Ipswich40415213265-3327
View full Championship table

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