The history makers have been consigned to ancient history after the latest first-round exit from the League Cup against Preston.

It is now five years in a row that City have fallen at the opening hurdle and magical memories of 2012-2013 seem in the distant past.

But unlike the FA Cup, there is no prize money for getting through each round. A run in the Carabao Cup only makes a real profit if you go a long way.


City rightly earned the plaudits for standing strong in the Grimsby barrage last weekend.

But the defensive frailties that plagued them last season once more reared their ugly head on Tuesday.

Gary Bowyer was furious at the manner of all four Preston goals, especially the third when Anthony O’Connor misplaced a pass across the face of the penalty area.

Every schoolboy defender is taught never to play the ball across your own box.


Connor Wood once more demonstrated that he looks more effective further up the pitch.

Wood played on the left of the front three and took the game to Preston during City’s best spell of the match right after half-time.

He hit the woodwork with a curling effort and then set up a chance for Danny Devine.

With Jackson Longridge and Adam Henley battling it out at left back, a midfield role is looking a more natural fit for the athletic Wood.


The way that City’s much-changed side were so easily swatted away by Preston’s “second string” highlighted the urgent need for more recruitment before the transfer window shuts on September 2.

Bowyer has talked for several weeks now about bringing in a couple more players to add options – on the evidence of Tuesday night, that is a pressing matter.

Maybe a result like that will encourage Stefan Rupp to back his manager again and let him tap into some of that Oli McBurnie windfall.


It seems silly to say just three games into the new season but Oldham’s visit has a “must win” feel.

The feelgood factor that has returned to the club over the summer is in danger of soon drifting away if City don’t start to put their stamp on matters.

After the disjointed atmosphere around the club previously, the fans are back onside. But they expect to see their team up and running sooner rather than later.