Leeds United manager Neil Warnock welcomed Paddy Kisnorbo into his starting line-up for the first time during pre-season while Paddy Kenny and Luciano Becchio also returned from minor injuries to take their places in the starting line-up for the trip to Preston North End.Kisnorbo started alongside Jason Pearce at centre back and the defenders had some early work to do as Preston started brightly - but it was Leeds who almost went in front inside five minutes when Luke Varney forced a good save from Thorsten Stuckmann. Preston also had to clear a powerful ball into the middle before Tom Lees could convert at the far post.
Kenny, who was wearing the captain's armband on his return, had more work to do than on his previous appearances during the early exchanges as Preston proved the biggest threat of pre-season. Ross McCormack had a free-kick deflected for a corner on the half-hour and the subsequent set play forced a save out of Stuckmann, but there was litte in the way of clear cut chances or goalmouth action during the opening 30 minutes.The breakthrough came just moments after the half-hour, though, when central defender Tom Lees showed great skill to bring the ball down just inside the penalty area before swivelling and smashing home a volley past Stuckmann.United also made a change during the first half with Kisnorbo, on his first appearance since late last year, playing the opening half hour or so before being replaced by Sam Byram. Lees reverted to centre-back, alongside Pearce. The game was the best test yet of the defence in terms of work, and the manager will have been more than pleased with solidity shown.The second half started in similar vein. Stuckmann made an early catch from Varney, but the home side continued to put United under a little pressure. But when the hosts did work an opening Jack King screwed a shot high and wide. And equaliser did come, though, 12 minutes into the half when John Mousinho scored with a good strike from just inside the box.The hour mark saw a re-shuffle for Leeds with a triple substitution that saw Danny Pugh, Adam Drury, and Andy Gray all introduced to proceedings.And it was 2-1 to Leeds on 66 minutes when Sam Byram scored his first goal in a senior shirt, Paul Green supplied the corner and Byram converted with a sweetly struck effort in front of over 2,500 travelling Leeds fans.Preston did come close to levelling again within a minute, but Kenny got down well to claw away a stooping header.United added a third with 10 minutes remaining, though. David Norris did well before the ball fell to Aidy White who scored with yet another good strike to leave Stuckmann with no chance.