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Club News

Westley: Correct Decision

29 January 2013

Graham Westley believes referee Simon Hooper made the correct decision postponing the game.


Hooper deemed the Broadfield Stadium pitch unplayable following heavy rain fall in Sussex and took the decision to postpone the League One clash between Crawley Town and PNE an hour before kick-off.
Speaking after the decision was made, Westley explained the players safety is the most important point to consider and praised the North End supporters who made the long trip from Lancashire with a number of fans already at the stadium when the decision was made.

The PNE boss said: “It is very wet on the pitch, when you make long trips everybody moans and groans about late call offs but they have done everything they can to get the game on.

“I can totally understand where the referee is coming from and why they have left the game on for so long it is one of those unfortunate things.

“We didn’t want to travel or our fans have to travel down, it is sickening that the game is off so late but there is nothing they can do about it, they have done their best to get the game on.

“The rain has fallen and it keeps on falling. There are dangerous patches on the pitch and it is the right decision. 

“There are patches on the pitch where players could easily lose their feet due to the surface and you don’t want to see a nasty injury to somebody so on that basis alone it is the correct decision.

“To be honest you wouldn’t be able to get a game of football on the pitch, there are patches of water and it is not what we want. We obviously want to get the game on and we would love to get the game won but it is the right decision and nobody can do anything about it.

“I live local to here and I had absolutely no thought in my mind that it would be called off, the weather has been ok all day and the rain has set in late on and it has made the surface difficult and dangerous.

“It is a nightmare for the supporters and the players are gutted. The people who follow the Club and travel the country put in a tremendous amount of commitment and it is a sickening when something like this happens. 

“We went to Bury earlier this season and had a similar situation and rain was falling before kick-off and I have to say that I thought the pitch at Bury didn’t look dangerous, yes there were patches of water but the pitch didn’t look dangerous.  If you see a player get their foot stuck in a pot hole, turn their ankle and break it, everybody would be regretting that the game was played.”
The Preston boss moved on to speak about today’s loan signing Declan Rudd, who has agreed to join the Club until the end of the season from Premier League outfit Norwich City. 

Rudd, an England youth international, is a player who has been on Westley’s radar for some time.
“Dec was first recommended to me during the summer, I was away doing my pro-licence and one of the FA coaches mentioned him to me. He said if you want a top kid who needs to go out and get games and served his apprenticeship and has done well at every level he has played at, he is the player for you.

“Everyone from the youth coaches to Stuart Pearce in the U21s has spoken very highly of him so I have had a good luck at him and I have been speaking to Norwich about him throughout the season and he became available and has joined us until the end of the season.

“It is nice to bring a goalkeeper of his qualities into the Club and it is a nice boost following the departure of Steve Simonsen.”


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