GRAYSON BOILING AT REFEREE KETTLE Late goal denies nine-man Preston
PRESTON manager Simon Grayson hit out at referee Trevor Kettle after seeing his nine-man side denied a win against Wolves by an injury-time equaliser at Deepdale.
Daniel Johnson put Preston ahead after ten minutes but Joe Garner saw red shortly afterwards and Bailey Wright received a second yellow ten minutes from time.
Wolves finally made the most of their advantage when Kevin McDonald curled in a 91st-minute equaliser to deny Preston their first home win of the season and extend their winless streak to seven matches.
Grayson was heavily critical of referee Kettle, saying he knew what to expect when he was appointed for the match.
“I stick up for referees because I know they have a very tough job, but there’s certain referees that when you know you’re going to get them you know you’re in for a tough afternoon,” he said.
“We know what we always get when he referees. I’m not complaining just for our side because I thought there were decisions that went for us that were very surprising as well.
“It probably sums him up that when I was in the tunnel waiting to see him, he wouldn’t come down the tunnel to see me. I don’t know what he thought I was going to do to him.
“First and foremost, credit to the players for how they did.
“The way they put their bodies on the line, keeper making saves and players working their socks off to get the three points makes me hugely proud of what we’ve done.
“Obviously it’s tinged with disappointment for them because the result has been taken out of our hands to a certain degree.”
Daniel Johnson put Preston in front in the tenth minute with his fourth league goal of the season.
The midfielder picked the ball up 25 yards out, jinked inside his man and curled the ball left-footed into the bottom corner.
But Preston’s super start was damaged after 19 minutes.
Usually prolific striker Garner is yet to score this season and his campaign got even worse when he was shown a straight red card for a high boot which caught Wolves captain Danny Batth.
Jed Wallace forced a smart save at his near post from Jordan Pickford after 50 minutes before the keeper denied him again after 56 minutes, diving low to his left to brilliantly tip the strike from 20 yards round the post.
Preston’s task in the last ten minutes was made even more difficult when Wright received a secondyellow for fouling Dominic Iorfa.
Wolves poured forward and Pickford made another terrific save in the 90th minute to palm Batth’s near-post header wide.
But in the 91st minute, Preston’s resistance was finally broken when McDonald curled a rightfooted effort from 25 yards over Pickford and into the top corner.
Wolves boss Kenny Jackett thought the referee did his job and felt his side should have made more of advantage.
“I think the referee was right – I felt he just did his job,” he said.
“Obviously the sending off and the second sending off are the talking points of the game.
“As often happens in situations like that we had our chances late when they were weary.
“It was a great goal from Kevin. All of our chances came late on and by the end we were disappointed with a point.
“Fair play to Preston though, they do defend their box well and did so for an awfully long time.
“We’re disappointed that we haven’t converted enough to win the game.”
SEEING RED: Preston’s Bailey Wright follows Joe Garner, inset, for an early bath
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