Preston NE 2 Rotherham United 1: Cruel way to lose, admits Redfearn

Neil Redfearn.
Neil Redfearn.
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Preston manager Simon Grayson said he did not need to give a half-time rollicking as they came from behind to beat struggling Rotherham 2-1 in the Sky Bet Championship with a last-gasp winner.

North End, who beat promotion chasing Hull on Monday, were dismal in the first half and trailed to Tony Andreu’s 35th-minute header.

It was a different story after the break, with the hosts camped in the Millers’ half, and they levelled just after the hour through Eoin Doyle.

And just as it looked like they would have to settle for a point, visiting striker Jonson Clarke-Harris headed into his own net in the third minute of time added on.

After such a poor first 45 minutes, Grayson could have been justified in getting stuck into his players, but he said it was not warranted.

“I thought first half we were a bit slow in possession, didn’t move it quick enough and didn’t show enough care,” he said.

“Out of possession we were a yard off the pace. Rotherham got their noses in front and we knew we might be in for a tough afternoon.

“We changed the system a little bit and troubled their back four a lot more.

“There was no hair dryer. The players are honest enough to know that we weren’t good enough and they know what we needed to do.

“We changed it tactically and put more balls in the box, but at the same time we had to shut our back door to make sure Rotherham didn’t hit us on the break.

“It’s a fantastic result for us today and I said just before that we are due a late goal and they don’t get much later than that.

“It’s another three points and people wake up in the morning and see that we have won the game, it doesn’t matter how late it was.”

Victory for North End was not undeserved as they laid siege at Rotherham’s goal in the second half, with only visiting goalkeeper Lee Camp keeping the Millers in it.

But having been so close to holding out for a point boss Neil Redfearn was left floored.

“It was cruel, I felt we played well first half, we went in front and could have got another one,” he said.

“Then they put us on the back foot at the start of the second half. We had to make changes that we perhaps didn’t want to make. We are struggling for bodies.

“But we are looking for more resilience. We are talking about seconds not minutes, but we need to be tougher.

“We have to go again and make sure we pick enough points to stay in this division. We have to dust ourselves down and go again.”