'What on earth are they bouncing around for? It's half-two. Do they think they've already won or something?"

Well they did and it soon became clear as to why.

Saturday was a day that, no matter how hard you try, won't be forgotten anytime soon. A truly sobering ordeal as two thousand Preston North End fans watched their team get put to the sword on enemy territory and listened to the rival fans lap every single second of it up.

Football torture springs to mind as an appropriate phrase. A worst nightmare on the seaside. Hell. We've enjoyed those eight years reminiscing and reminding about that Monday night in August. Now, it's their turn until March.

To the right of where the North End fans were situated - many of whom were admitted late - stood a section of home supporters who simply did not stop making noise. The decibels only increased with goals one and two as the pre-match party atmosphere was justified.

This bitter, fierce, old rivalry between two Lancashire clubs is back alright and PNE's performance in the first since 2013 fell way below expectation and requirement.

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Blackpool went with a 4-4-2 system and caused havoc out wide throughout, with North End creating one big chance over the 90 minutes. There were moments, some glimmers of hope and long-throws galore but every time they came around it ended in sighs from the away end and roars from the home. You felt the hosts had PNE where they wanted them all match.

Richard Keogh and Gary Madine rewound the years at either end of the pitch as Josh Earl was taken off before the second goal and Ryan Ledson left on the bench tackling the seat in front of him.

The injury time brawl in which captain Alan Browne was sent down the tunnel summed the day up. That game meant a lot to the Irishman but he beat the turf in fury after the second goal and then saw his emotion boil over at the death.

You can put this one in the same bracket as Jay Rodriguez at Turf Moor in 2010. Perhaps worse.

The thing that hurts more than anything? Those 90 minutes were a brutal reality check, that a rival who've been in the shadows for the last six years, are now only heading one way.

For North End, you have to question how the club and squad picks itself up and gets fans - many of whom are now calling for the head coach to depart - back onside after the agony of Saturday.

Plenty of supporters have seen this coming and the days of PNE challenging for a spot in the top six don't half seem a distant memory right now.

The Lilywhites sit 19th after 14 matches, having won three, drawn six and lost five. Neil Critchley's team are six points and eight places better off and that makes for painful reading.

Whether it goes beyond the coaching staff makes for another debate entirely.

But in an era where many clubs seem to be getting it right and moving with the times, North End simply can't afford to have a struggling squad, disgruntled fan base and off-the-field environment holding them back too.

That will only end one way.

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