Continued series from themaclad (Irvine era) Al had a tough start he was appointed about 6 weeks before the transfer window opened. A televised defeat against Charlton opened his managerial account however a 3-0 win against Hull promised better things. Next up were them from the land of the Tower, newly promoted and the first M55 derby for many a long year. It absolutely poured down, the points went west as Burgess beat Youl for pace and Hooligan chipped the penalty home, took me weeks to dry out after that one. Christmas and New Year fixtures brought home defeats by Cardiff and Scunthorpe. Bottom of the table but we could bring in players, Chaplow and Chris Brown arrived, it took a while but we started to pick up wins Stoke and West Brom were beaten at Deepdale and by the time Sheff Utd suffered their usual Deepdale defeat we were virtually safe. The next season started extremely well in the top three until Wolves arrived and Big Chris scored a hat trick and was sent off. A poor run of form then results started to pick up again including a massacre at Bloomfield. A freezing Sunday afternoon saw North End outplayed for 40 minutes trailing to a howitzer from Hamill, and then Chaplow started to take control. The 2nd half was all North End as Chris Brown and Mellor scored the 3 goals to give us a convincing win. Under Al we were functional we didn't score many but got results. Play Offs looked on until a home defeat by them, Adam casually strolling through the middle of the park before hitting a slow moving shot which crept into the net via the post. Doom and gloom amongst the ranks, Doncaster were beaten 2-0 then the arrival of Cardiff brought a bizarre score line. Two up approaching half time, we were doing well and then Cardiff won a penalty. McCormack's shot was saved by Lonners and we went into half time 2 up however the crowd began to realize that we were not yet down and out. Four more goals in the 2nd half including a magnificent own goal by Mark Kennedy gave us a 6-0 win. Birmingham for a televised match losing by one McKenna blitzes one in from miles out and Wallace curls in a free kick in the last minute to win it. Wallace takes his shirt off gets sent off, however the earlier sending off of Lee Williamson was a far more devastating blow.(Thanks Lee Bowyer) Had to win the last match against QPR to ensure a playoff spot we did just about having to endure a torrid last few minutes when even the Rangers keeper was going up for corners. Cardiff lost at Hillsborough and it was the Blades home and away. We should have had momentum but both games were disappointing. Drew at home 1-1 then put in a strange defensive game at Bramall Lane losing 1-0 barely having an attack. In the close season rumour has it we had a chance to buy Charlie Adam instead we got Shumulokoski. Optimism wasn't great and I got the feeling that quite a lot of people began to realise that Al's football was dull. In fact the only highlight was a point at Bloomfield after being battered for vast periods of the game. Away match at Watford and Sheff United led to defeats but without a single goal attempt on target. On the day of the Sheff Utd game I went to watch Accrington play Bury, the Shakers won 4-2 and I came off the ground feeling like I had been entertained by two teams who played attacking football something Al hadn't done for months Al was potted the next day. This led to Kelly and Barr's 1 match reign against Colchester in the cup they won 7-0, a fine way to bow out of the club. Then it was daddy's boy ............................................................................................................................................. (Ferguson era) Didn't last long but boy did he divide the fans. In a way he was slightly unlucky but it's results on the pitch that count and sadly for Fergie we didn't get enough of them hence relegation. Looks like he fell out with several of the players straight away, with the likes of Chaplow consigned to train with the youth team. Gained a 1-0 win at Peterborough which would have pleased him however we started to ship goals at an alarming rate. Brought in some good loan signings (well two of them) Matty James and Danny Welbeck and to be honest the football was more entertaining than under Al. Gained safety after a nervy 3-2 win over Scunthorpe with a late Treacy winner after a Ledge blunder had let Scunny into the game. Things changed for Fergie and PNE on the last Saturday in May when a certain club gained promotion. Optimism was low to say the least at the start of the new season a first day defeat by Doncaster followed by a drubbing at Swansea(believe me it was a drubbing I was there) Finally got off the mark with a win against Pompey and then didn't win for a month in which time we had thrown a 3-1 away against the Clarets won at Coventry before one unbelievable night at Leeds encapsulated Fergie's tenure. Hapless defending led us to be 4-1behind before the Beast and possibly Fergie's legacy to the club Hume inspired a remarkable turnaround to win 6-4. Were things on the up, well er, no beat Palace 4-3 after being 4-1 up unlucky not to beat Wigan in the cup, however it would be a long time until we would win again. Two soulless defeats against Barnsley and Hull should have led to his sacking but he managed to bring in a few loan players but things didn't change. A single goal victory over Ipswich was his last and following a defeat against Middlesbrough win it was patently obvious that Plan A wasn't working trouble was he'd no Plan B. Following the sacking the loan players disappeared faster than the Lib/Dems plans for AV and David Unsworth was left to pick up the pieces a easy win for Derby followed by an unlucky defeat at Palace then it was the master of the Tan ................................................................................................................................................ (Phil Brown reign) The arrival of the man with a tan was greeted well by the faithful considering some of the other names on the list. Sadly for Phil it took 13 matches to gain that elusive first win, however team spirit seemed to improve with his arrival at times it almost looked like the players knew what they were doing. Brought in some decent loan signings and some not so good ones Johnson and Clarke. Bit by bit the expectations of the fans began to rise as late goals against Coventry and Swansea saw us creep closer. Sadly though it wasn't to be, another shocker in front of the TV camera at the New Den followed by a slightly unlucky defeat to Cardiff condemned us to the drop. Phil's got a tough job on his hands but after yesterday's result and performance things could be better. WELL THAT WAS THE CHAMPIONSHIP IT'S IN THE PAST, ONLY THE FUTURE TO LOOK FORWARD TO AND IT WILL BE WHITE.