Alex Neil made changes but to little or no effect as Preston went down by a solitary early goal away at Reading. Preston have a dismal recent record in Royal Berkshire and Saturday was no different.
The statistics will say that Preston had the better of the possession, more attempts and more shots on goal than the home team but it has been an all too familiar theme this season that Preston lack any clinical edge in the final third to make the opposition pay.
Reading were having a poor season after making the play offs last season but found it all too easy against Preston. An early free kick was flicked on and Barrow was left unmarked at the far post to head home.
Lewis Moult did hit a free kick against the outside of the post shortly after and Maguire smashed a header against the bar but Preston failed to register on the scoresheet for the second game in succession.
Other results mean that Preston now fall way down the pecking order in thew race for a top six spot. They now sit 11th which is where they have finished for the past two seasons.
It will be a big summer for Neil who will bring his own personnel after having limited time with the squad next summer. It is clear that he has issues all over the park to address.
Neil is certainly unsure about his goalkeepers with Rudd and Maxwell swapping on a regular basis. It is no secret that Neil wanted to bring in a midfielder in January alongside Pearson and the striking options need to be added to.
Preston hae five games remaining with Leeds at home on Tuesday.Ordinarily a big gate would be expected but this has turned into no more than a midtable end of season affair.