In a game with an Aussie flavour, World Cup Socceroo Bailey Wright started against Liverpool but couldn’t help his League One club Preston who went down 2-1 to the EPL giant in a friendly this weekend.
At Preston's home ground Deepdale, defender Wright played in the first half only after North End manager Simon Grayson elected to select two different XIs for each half.
Socceroo midfielder Neil Kilkenny also played for North End in the opening 45 minutes only while Socceroo keeper Brad Jones started for Liverpool, giving the game a real Australian flavour.
Twenty one year-old Wright from Melbourne's Mornington Peninsula faced a star-studded Liverpool who gave starts to new signings Emre Can and Rickie Lambert whilst Fabio Borini also started in a potent attack for the Reds.
Grayson said he was happy to have his Aussie central defender back and was satisfied fitness wouldn’t be an issue given the Socceroos’ boot camp in the lead up to Brazil.
“It is nice to have Bailey back. He trained on Monday, Tuesday and again yesterday, and looked in good shape,” Grayson told www.lep.co.uk.
“Going to the World Cup was a great experience for him and I’m sure that now he will be looking to get a Preston shirt back on.”
The friendly was dubbed the "Shankly Shield" in honour of Bill Shankly who played for the Lillywhites and managed the Reds to numerous honours.