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Match Report


Posted Wed 17 Jul 13 at 11:24 AM

A second half goal from Chris Atkinson earned Tranmere a 1-1 draw at Preston North End. 
The strike had looked set to give Rovers all three points but Joe Garner's late header meant the match ended all square. 
Ronnie Moore named an unchanged starting line-up following the 3-2 win over MK Dons as both Danny Holmes and Tom Hateley recovered from injury. Also on the comeback from injuries were Jason Mooney and Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro who were both named among the substitutes alongside Antonie Boland who was involved in the squad for the first time. 
Rovers started brightly and it needed a good save from Declan Rudd to keep out Baggie's fourth minute header from Holmes' right wing cross. 
At the other end a cross from Scott Laird went straight through the Tranmere six yard box while Owain Fon Williams kept out a long range shotsfrom Iain Hume. 
The seventh minute saw fans from both teams join in a minute's applause for Joe Thompson while Preston's big screen carried a message of support for the winger. 
Fon Williams saved Paul Gallagher's 25 yard shot on 21 minutes while Hume tried to twist his way through the Tranmere defence without success a minute later.
On 32 minutes Rovers broke quickly from a Preston free kick. The ball fell to Atkinson inside his own half and he quickly played it wide to Baggie who ran at the Preston defence before shooting wide of the target from the edge of the penalty area. 
Gallagher raced into the Tranmere area and looked to have given the home side the lead when he chipped the ball over Fon Williams but Jim McNulty was quickly back to clear off the line. On the stroke of half time Gallagher was involved again, testing Fon Williams direct from a free kick as the sides went into the break all square.
After dominated the early stages of the second half, Rovers took the lead with their first attack. Jake Kirby won the ball off Keith Keane deep in his own half and quickly found Max Power. He raced into the Preston half and slipped the ball through to Chris Atkinson who controlled before curling a low shot past Rudd and into the bottom right corner from the edge of the area. 
Hume curled a shot straight at Fon Williams on 56 minutes and substitute Lee Holmes saw his 25 yard effort deflect inches past the left hand post five minutes later. 
Rovers' first change saw Jason Koumas come on for Tom Hateley while Preston brought on Joe Garner and Stuart Beavon soon after. 
Ash Taylor got his foot in the way of a goalbound effort from Laird on 75 minutes while Koumas tracked back after losing possession three minutes later and got a vital block on Lee Holmes' shot.
The home side drew level on 90 minutes. A cross from the right was met by Joe Garner and his header went just inside the left hand post beyond the dive of Fon Williams. 
Both teams went in search of a late winner but neither keeper was tested in the dying moments. 

Preston: Rudd, Keane, Laird, Wright, Huntington, Clarke, Welsh, Gallagher (Holmes 60), Humphrey, Davies (Garner 71), Hume (Beavon 71). Unused substitutes: Stuckman, Buchanan, Byrom, Mousinho.

Tranmere: Fon Williams, Holmes, Taylor, McNulty, Ridehalgh, Baggie, Power, Hateley (Koumas 65), Atkinson, Kirby, Lowe. Unused substitutes: Mooney, Boland, Jennings, Rowe, Stockton, Akpa Akpro. 

Referee: Geoff Eltringham

Yellow cards: Wright (82), Keane (84), Fon Williams (87), Power (90+2)

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