Ollie fuming after two dismissals
IAN Holloway was left frustrated with referee Jeremy Simpson after he had two players sent off in QPR’s defeat against Preston at Deepdale.
The R’s were reduced to ten men after 22 minutes when Jamie Mackie was dismissed, while Alex Baptiste was also sent off after the final whistle for an apparent comment aimed at Ben Pearson.
Jordan Hugill struck the winner two minutes from time to make it four games unbeaten for Preston.
QPR are now five games without a win and have lost four of those, while they still haven’t won at Deepdale since 1980. But Holloway’s focus was on the referee and Baptiste’s dismissal.
“Alex Baptiste refused to shake Pearson’s hand and he called him something – the referee told me he thought he’d said it to him,” Holloway explained. “Alex didn’t even know it was him that had got the second yellow. What he’s said to a former team-mate the referee is saying he said to him.
“Week in, week out at the moment we seem to have a lot to be aggrieved about when it comes to the man with the whistle. We will be appealing Jamie Mackie’s red.
“It was a bitterly disappointing day on the road again because our performance with all the people we’ve got out was absolutely terrific. Unfortunately, we’ve got no points when we should have got at least one.
“We’ve lost one-nil. But am I proud? Yes. Is it a bad run we’re in? Yes. Can we get out of it? Yes.”
Preston hadn’t scored in their previous two home games but their task was made much easier when QPR were reduced to ten men after 22 minutes. Mackie was given a straight red for a crunching tackle on Tom Clarke.
And skipper Clarke, making his first start since April after an Achilles injury, had a chance to give Preston the lead seven minutes later, but headed wide from Paul Gallagher’s whipped free-kick.
The home crowd at Deepdale were showing their frustration and Preston responded with a period of sustained pressure, the clearest chance coming on the hour when Pearson squared for Callum Robinson, who was superbly denied from eight yards by a Baptiste block.
QPR remained a threat and came close with a set-piece in the 75th minute, as Ilias Chair’s delivery evaded everyone and almost crept into the far corner.
Two minutes from time Preston finally got the breakthrough as Hugill was set through one-onone and slid the ball under Alex Smithies to snatch the win.
“Relief is the emotion as much as anything else,” said Preston manager Alex Neil.
“When you play against ten men people think it’s easy to roll them over and win the game. We had to be on our guard and patient and move the ball quickly. It was frustrating at times. We had to be composed and the chances will create themselves.
“It was just relief that we’ve won the game. Hopefully we can kick on and try and pick up some more points.
“I’m really pleased for the fans. We’ve been through a sticky spell but I said all along to judge us when we get all our players back. I had options today which I didn’t have in previous games. That was pleasing.”
GIVE US A HUG: Preston’s Jordan Hugill is mobbed after scoring the late winner which has extended their unbeaten run to four games