Beckford stays out of trouble on return
Jermaine Beckford staying out of the headlines on his return to action for Preston came as a relief to Simon Grayson.
The striker had been sent off in his previous two games, with Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Aston Villa his first match back after suspension.
Beckford came on as a 75th minute substitute for two-goal hero Jordan Hugill.
On a day when referee Andy Madley dished out six yellow cards – four of them for PNE players – Beckford kept on the right side of the law.
North End boss Grayson said: “Jermaine came on and worked hard.
“He managed to stay on the pitch for a while...seriously though, you know what you are going to get from him.
“Jermaine owes a lot to the supporters and owes a lot to myself after what happened.
“Hopefully between now and the end of the season, he gets some goals to help the team carry on the run we are on.”
Beckford had been banned for seven of the last eight games, his one appearance in that spell seeing him red-carded against Leeds only three minutes after coming on as sub.
At Villa he got straight back on the bench, ahead of Eoin Doyle and Stevie May who both travelled but did not make the match-day 18.
Simon Makienok was the other striker on the bench.
Grayson only used two of his subs at Villa, Daryl Horgan being a 59th minute replacement for Callum Robinson.
“Horgan was very effective when he came on,” said Grayson.
“He was unlucky to have been left out of the team after playing very well against Brighton.
“That shows the strength and depth we have in the squad. It was nice to include Andy Boyle on the bench too.”