Preston eased past a poor Wigan side in the Lancashire derby for their first Championship points of the season.
Sean Maguire headed Paul Gallagher’s corner across the keeper to put the hosts ahead, but Wigan responded with Josh Windass and Lewis Macleod forcing saves from Declan Rudd.
Five minutes after being denied an almost-certain goal, Louis Moult doubled Preston’s lead with a free header from 10 yards which was too powerful for David Marshall to keep out.
Playmaker Gallagher curled a third into the top corner from a free-kick as Paul Cook’s side offered little resistance after the break.
Alex Neil’s Preston made four changes from their defeat at Millwall, with Moult making his mark and Daniel Johnson playing his part in two of their goals.
First he was given time to cross from the left for Moult to head home, before playing a short one-two from the free-kick which Gallagher perfectly despatched.
Windass was the visitors’ most dangerous player – forcing a decent, low second-half stop from Rudd – but Wigan’s performance was little better than their previous trip to Preston last season, where the Latics were beaten 4-0.
Preston were without striker David Nugent, who is yet to feature since returning to the club this summer, but their opponents won just twice on their travels last season and this performance was a continuation of their away-day problems.
Preston manager Alex Neil: “It was important for us to win here and to do it in the manner we did was very pleasing. We created enough chances to score even more goals.
I made some bold changes with four alterations and took out some lads who have done brilliantly for us but if it’s what I feel is right for that game, I will make those decisions.”