It is Newcastle v Preston on Monday night.
A match where one team has everything to play for and the opposition very little/nothing.
Newcastle would be promoted with a victory, if Huddersfield fail to beat Fulham at home on Saturday.
Preston on the other hand are only four places off the play-offs but 12 points adrift with only three games remaining, so they are in no man’s land.
A run of 12 games with only a single loss had revived faint hopes of promotion but the last two games saw (last minute) defeat to Huddersfield and then Norwich.
This can usually go two ways…
A team with nothing to play for can simply go through the motions, or relax and potentially play their best football of the season.
Preston midfielder Andy Boyle insists the players’ minds are on anything but the beach and that they are ‘going to try and spoil the party’ at St James Park.
You can’t ignore the fact either that the novelty of playing in front of fifty thousand people will be sure to sway the Preston players more towards giving it everything, rather than lying down and seeing the season out without a murmur.
Preston will be backed with one of their smallest away followings of the season but Andy Boyle points to the ‘full house’ at St James Park as a massive motivation and that his team ‘want to go there and give a
good account of ourselves’.
Boyle has had an interesting last year of so already, one of the stars of Dundalk’s European adventure, he played against the likes of Zenit and AZ Alkmaar.
After winning the Irish League (played throughout the summer), Andy Boyle and Dundalk teammate – winger Daryl Horgan (who was linked with Newcastle), then arrived at Preston as out of contract players in December and both were handed two and a half year contracts.
“They (Newcastle) are one of the biggest clubs in the country and they will want to get promoted but we’ll be going to try and spoil the party.
“It’s going to be a full house there and we want to go there and give a good account of ourselves.”