After the Swansea City defeat I wrote that a week is a long time in football - that has proven to be true once again after Preston North End's 2-2 draw at Carrow Road.

Last weekend was admittedly a peculiar and pretty miserable experience.

It's grim watching your team, knowing they are capable of so much more as they slump to an opening day defeat - on top of that you left Deepdale pretty resigned to the fact that PNE were about to lose their Player of the Season.

Seven days on and PNE have played their bogey side Derby off the park in their own back yard and gone to Norwich - the side tipped for the title - and looked every bit as good as them.

Norwich is hardly round the corner but there were several things yesterday that made the trip to the home of Alan Partridge worth it.

The day admittedly didn't get off to the best start on a personal note as the contents of my glass of lemonade were soon hurled all over the floor of Morrisons' Cafe.

After a brief moment of embarrassment though, I looked up and saw five bright yellow shirts all sit down on a table - a sight I hadn't really thought I'd missed that much but one that was a welcomed pleasant surprise.

It's not been the same being at the matches without fans and from the moment I spotted those Norwich fans in the cafe, every home fan I saw from then on in looked as though they were reliving their first ever match.

The sun was shining and it was a cracking day for football - one young lad was walking to the ground with a spring in his step and his brand new home shirt on, telling his rather puzzled Grandma how it was different to last season's.

I don't really associate Norwich with being the most raucous bunch but those 1,000 - together with the 'Holiday Inn Four' from Preston - made the whole match day experience 20 times better.

When the Norwich goalkeepers came out to warm up first it was as if they were walking out at the Colosseum.

The club's announcer did his job in getting the fans going but in reality he didn't need to - this lot had waited months for this moment and you could see the genuine release of emotion when welcoming their team on to the pitch.

"I didn't think there was any lack of spirit on the pitch or atmosphere and you can't say that about any of the other games. I thought it helped the match and I enjoyed the game today, apart from the result," said Alex Neil after the game.

One chap could be spotted stood up with his arms wide apart, belting out the pre-match songs and any club chant that started at the top of his voice.

It was like football's answer to the final meal on I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, when the final two get to choose whatever they want to eat after months on rice, beans and kangaroo.

Back to the on the pitch stuff though and I think it's fair to say that despite the impressive showing at Derby midweek, this felt like it was going to be a real test for PNE.

From the very off though the away side showed their intent, got in Norwich's faces and simply didn't let the hosts get into their stride.

The Swansea game was like watching a side you didn't recognise at times; this was vintage Alex Neil's Preston.

I do think the big occasions suit North End sometimes - those away games where the onus and expectation is on the hosts and PNE are able to play their high-octane, pressing game to maximum effect.

There was more than that here though.

On the ball the Lilywhites looked the more composed, they didn't rush things and simply waited to pick Norwich off for the second goal, which was a thing of beauty for several reasons.

I have the feeling we are going to be talking about Ryan Ledson quite a lot this season.

This is a lad that appeared to be down the pecking order and has shot right to the top; he's positive, he's fearless and he's got bags of ability too.

Everything Preston North End fans appreciate in one of their players, he got in his locker - it's all there for him now to go and become a real hit this season.

I would say his exquisite pass through to Scott Sinclair was better than the second goal itself, but when Darnell Fisher thumps it home on the volley for his first goal and gives it big time to the home fans, that's not possible.

As well as the team's performance, there was one other player who I think has stepped up in these last two games.

Alan Browne was the star of 2018/19, but most recently he's either found himself at right back or in midfield where hasn't had quite as much of an impact as previously.

Forget #BaleIsBack, it looks like #BrowneIsBack.

He's returned to that number 10 role in the absence of Daniel Johnson and has just looked himself again - his running power is incredible, the ground he covers is even more impressive and when he's at it like he has been in these last two matches, he makes PNE tick.

His role in the build-up to winning the corner that won the penalty was trademark Alan Browne

Alex Neil resembled the fan base after the Swansea defeat - he seemed fed up, frustrated and rightly so.

While gutted for his players to not have won at Carrow Road, the PNE boss had positivity and enthusiasm back in his voice after the game - he knew North End had given his old club a real run for their money.

The Lilywhites still have plenty of work to do off the pitch over the next month, but on it they're looking like the team the fans have rightly placed lots of belief in.

That said, we shouldn't get too carried away after two performances... (see you at Wembley)