Major Decisions Go Against Preston

Tommy Spurr returned to the starting line up in central defence as Tom Clarke was out injured. Browne partnered Gallagher in central midfield whilst Johnson was allowed further forward behind Robinson.

Preston actually had the better of the first half. The two main talking points went against the visitors as the officials conspired to make life difficult for Preston.

Robinson was put through on goal with two defenders in pursuit. He was approaching the area when he was pulled down. It was a clear red card offence and replays showed it was more akin to a rugby tackle. Referee Hooper bottled the decision and gave a yellow card.

North End actually had the ball in the net when Spurr headed in a free kick. The linesman raised his flag yet replays suggest that Spurr was being played onside. These key details would have changed the game massively.

The only chance the home side had in the first half was late on when Rudd rushed out to stop the attack. The sides went in level at half time although it was a fortunate scoreline for the hosts.

North End took the lead early in the second half. Barkhuizen, on the left, curled in a ball which evaded everyone including the keeper. The cross ended up in the back of the net to give Preston the lead.

The visitors then took their foot off the gas. Brentford came back in the game hitting the post. Preston then faled to clear their lines and the ball ended up on the edge of the box at the feet of Jozefzoon who slided the ball home.

Preston were then reduced to ten men. Cunningham received a booking when he collided with keeper Bentley. The keeper went down theatrically and the collision was not severe but again the referee sided with the hioome side and gave a yellow card.

Moments later Cunningham brought down Jozefzoon and was shown a second yellow. Preston made changes and held out for the last fifteen minutes with ten men although Rudd made one excellent save to keep the home team out.

Preston stay within touching distance of the top six thanks to other results but have a couple of difficult weeks ahead in terms of fixtures. If they can still be in touch by he start of March then Preston will have to commence an assault on the play off positions,