GIROUD SHAT­TERS PRE­STON DREAMS Gun­ners strike at the death

The Football League Paper - - FA CUP THIRD ROUND - By John McDougall

SI­MON GRAYSON was proud of his Pre­ston side de­spite nar­rowly los­ing out to a last­minute goal against Premier League giants Ar­se­nal. have be­grudged us if we’d drawn the game as well be­cause the per­for­mance for the first half was as good as I’ve had as my team since I’ve been here.”

The Cham­pi­onship side took a de­served sev­enth-minute lead when Ai­den McGeady fed in Jor­dan Hugill, who went down un­der a chal­lenge, but the loose ball fell to Robin­son who slot­ted past David Ospina.

The Li­ly­whites nearly added a sec­ond af­ter 20 min­utes when Hugill’s cross was met by Robin­son, but his header was blocked by Shko­dran Mustafi.

Robin­son broke down the right in be­hind the Ar­se­nal rear­guard in the 24th minute to tee up Hugill but

Cal­lum Robin­son handed Pre­ston an early lead as the Li­ly­whites gave the Gun­ners a tor­rid open­ing 45 min­utes, but Ar­se­nal ral­lied through Aaron Ram­sey’s thunderbolt af­ter the break be­fore Olivier Giroud’s late win­ner.

And though Li­ly­whites boss Grayson ad­mit­ted dis­ap­point­ment at the last-gasp de­feat, he branded the first-half per­for­mance as good as any he has seen dur­ing his time in the Deep­dale du­gout.

“It was dif­fi­cult to speak to the play­ers and what to say re­ally,” he said. “I’m ex­tremely proud of how they’ve played.

“We’ve made a very strong team look very or­di­nary in the first half, but ob­vi­ously the other side, we wanted to try and win a match or at least draw a match and we’re dis­ap­pointed we’ve con­ceded so late.

“It wasn’t what we de­served. No­body would have be­grudged us if we’d won the game. No­body would

RAM RAID: Aaron Ram­sey cel­e­brates scor­ing Ar­se­nal’s equaliser

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