Preston North End head coach Frankie McAvoy has suggested that Valerien Ismael should focus on his own West Bromwich Albion team instead of criticising other clubs style of play.
It comes after the Baggies could only muster up a 1-1 draw with the Lilywhites at Deepdale on Saturday, with Matt Phillips’ goal on the stroke of half-time cancelling out Ben Whiteman’s opener.
The Baggies were unable to get many chances off though with North End restricting them to just three shots on target, whilst they had a lot more of the ball with 68 per cent of the possession.
26 questions about West Brom’s managers from over the years – Can you score full marks?
North End’s refusal to play out from the back to suit West Brom’s high pressing style led to Ismael criticising PNE, accusing them of ‘not wanting to play’ and he made similar comments regarding two other teams they drew with in Millwall and Derby County.
It’s led to a stern response from McAvoy who has hit back at the Frenchman and hinted that he should work harder to find a solution to beat clubs who play against the Baggies.
“Sometimes it is not pretty, as we found on Saturday, when you have to stand up and be counted,” McAvoy said on North End’s football against West Brom following the convincing Carabao Cup success over Cheltenham last night, via LancsLive.
Love the EFL? Want to share your opinions about your club? Get involved by subscribing to FLW TV on Youtube HERE!
“We can’t play the free-flowing football that you want to, when teams try and press you and make it hard for you.
“Then, you have to find another way of trying to play and thankfully we got a positive result on Saturday with it.
“I know we have been criticised in terms of how we played, with the opposition manager.
“But at the end of the day, I think the most important thing for us is that I have got to deal with Preston North End.
“I would say to Valerien ‘you deal with West Brom’, I think that is more important because we are trying to do the best for our club and I thought we did alright on Saturday.”
You’ve got to say that McAvoy is spot on here – why should other clubs play into the hands of West Brom by making it easy for them?
If North End decided to play a free-flowing brand of football out from the back on Saturday then the Baggies may have picked them apart due to on paper having a better squad.
And as it happened, PNE’s style earned them a point on the day – it could have been different if not for a poor Jordan Hugill finish late on mind you – but they worked very hard for it.
The key to taking points off West Brom is seemingly soaking up the pressure and hitting them on the counter attack and now Ismael has to find a solution on how to counter the draws he’s been getting in recent matches as if they want to be promoted automatically they need to get back to winning ways soon.