Simon Grayson was pleased to see the ugly side of his team tonight as North End beat Leyton Orient 2-0.
Speaking to PNE.Com at the conclusion of the game which sees Preston move to within two points of league leaders Bristol City with the Lilywhites having a game in hand, Grayson said: “Obviously again, it is a buoyant dressing room, we have come to a difficult place, Leyton Orient looking for their first home win, they have some good players, and tonight we have had to work hard, do the ugly side of the game, but we always know we are going to get chances within the team because of the players we have got.
“I think tonight you saw a different side to us.
“We dug in when we really had to I thought, our goalkeeper [Jamie Jones] made a couple of fantastic saves at crucial stages, and it is always nice to come back to a football club when you have left previously and put on a performance and he will be delighted.
“But then you look at people like Paul Huntington and Jack King, and when they have needed to head things out of their own box at times they have gone and done it – one of Hunts’ clearances is probably more important than his goal because that would have got them back into the game.
“We wanted to get control of the game and we wanted to pass it around and manage the game from the start, get the ball out wide because we do feel that the wide players can be a threat against any player.
“Chris Humphrey is certainly playing with a huge amount of confidence and belief when you keep feeding him and it worked perfectly.
“When you play the system that we play, you expect your opposite wide player to get in the box and be the second striker, so it was great to see Callum Robinson in there and he has deserved his goal over the last period of time.”
Preston supporters would also have been pleased to see Tom Clarke appear from the bench following a recent illness which has kept him out of the squad, and the PNE No.5 showed his worth to the team by teeing up Huntington for his second goal in a week.
“We felt that they were getting a bit too much possession in the middle of the pitch with their wide players coming into certain areas and we just felt we wanted to go play 3-5-2, keep the players up top, be more solid, and I know Tom can play there,” added the manager.
“He is experienced and I knew he could be a threat from set pieces; but I didn’t think he would be helping us along the way with a second goal.
“I was delighted again for Hunts to get on the scoresheet and I’m absolutely chuffed to bits that he has got two goals in three games.”
Grayson also acclaimed the incredible North End faithful – each and every one of the 771 supporters who roared North End on to victory from the first whistle to last.
The gaffer continued: “It is a fantastic effort by the fans and the players really appreciate what the supporters do.
“It’s not easy time-wise to take time off work, money-wise, and it is a two way thing that we give them something to cheer about but they certainly inspire the players.
“That there on a Tuesday night just speaks volumes for what this football club is all about and long may it continue.
“I’m sure they will be turning out in force again at Rochdale at the weekend and then at Swindon the week after.”