WEB EXCLUSIVE: Simon Grayson – ‘We’ve nothing to lose’

Simon Grayson says that his Preston side have nothing to lose following their 1-1 draw with Nottingham Forest at Deepdale at the weekend.

Preston missed the chance to close the gap on the play-offs to just 4 points with a win, but a revitalized Forest side under new manager Mark Warburton had other ideas.

The Yorkshire man said afterwards: “We’ve got nothing to lose, if we’d have lost the game today then it’s difficult to take but we have to win games so we tried to do it.

“We’ve got seven games to go and you’ve seen today with other results – Sheffield Wednesday concede late on, other teams get beat. We’re just going to see where it takes us.

“We’re enjoying what we’re doing we’re embracing the situation and if anything comes of it then fantastic and if it doesn’t then we’ve had another fantastic season.”

It was Forest who scored first in the Sky Bet Championship fixture and Grayson pointed towards some half time changes from himself which saw his side earn a point in the end, especially given they could have been further adrift at the break.

“Chris Maxwell made a save just before half time which was crucial because if you go two nil down that’s a big mountain to climb.

“We changed the system at half time and the personnel, we were certainly the better team second half and looked like we could go on and win it.

“We went with a 442 first half and they were dominating the ball with Clough just behind them, we wanted to get three in there to stop them from playing, keep two upfront and push the wing-backs onto their fullbacks, play man for man all over the pitch, three at the back against their front three.

“I said to the players at half time that we’ve been fortunate we’re not two down because of Chris’s good save.

“We had to make sure that we had a little bit more about us. I made a change, changed the system and no slight on Daryl Horgan or Andy Boyle that went off.

“I went back with some of the lads who knew how to play the 3412 system that we’ve played quite a bit. They’ve had a fantastic week those two and they’ll learn from different types of games but we just needed different personnel to help us along the way.”

It was Aiden McGeady who got the hosts back on level terms, the star man on loan from Everton came up with the goods as he has done so often this season for North End. The Lilywhites boss wasn’t short of praise for him either:

“Well he’s (McGeady) done it many times hasn’t he. He turned down the opportunity a couple of times before that to get his shot away but Aiden can do that, he can get half a yard and hit the target, he gives you an opportunity.

“We moved him into that central area where he can play a big part in the system and he was effective. It was nice that he gave us that platform to try and get the next goal and then it became quite an open game with both sides trying to win it.”

Next up for Preston is  relegation threatened Bristol City at Deepdale on Tuesday night and Grayson is expecting just as tough a game with every team fighting for points at the business end of the season:

“The games are whittling down very quickly and it will be a different test for us. Another team that are desperate for the points.

“I said at the back end of the week that Forest should be doing better with the team that they’ve got and they’ve proved that today.

“Bristol are very similarly, but everyone’s fighting for points, we want to try and get back to winning ways and if we can get three points on Tuesday it sets us up for what becomes a six game season.

“They’re all tough games, all teams are fighting for different reasons and there’s so much unpredictability in this league, you’ve seen today. Nobody expected Burton to go and beat Huddersfield so we’ll just see where it takes us.

“I’ve said many times we’re not under pressure to get in the play offs, if we don’t we’ve had a great season but we’ll keep fighting to see where it takes us.”

Preston will have Daniel Johnson available again after his partner gave birth over the weekend.

 

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