Holm rule

Lethal: Livewire Lee Holmes is hoping the groin injury he picked up on Saturday against Coventry City isn't too serious
Lethal: Livewire Lee Holmes is hoping the groin injury he picked up on Saturday against Coventry City isn't too serious
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Lee Holmes has been forced to swap the scoresheet for the treatment table after registering his first Preston North End goal.

The 25-year-old winger netted North End’s equaliser in the 1-1 draw against Coventry at the Ricoh Arena.

But in the dying moments of the game he suffered a groin strain and is facing three or four weeks on the sidelines.

Aside from scoring the 77th minute leveller, Holmes was a real livewire in the clash which was one of only four League One games to beat the weather on Saturday.

So his absence over Christmas and into the New Year is a big blow, with him joining a lengthy Deepdale casualty list.

Holmes said: “It was great to get on the scoresheet and I’d wanted to get on it sooner than now.

“It’s a monkey off my back to score, I can move forward and my aim is to hopefully get a few more. At the same time it’s disappointing to have picked up a bit of a groin strain and I’ll be doing my best to get back as quickly as possible.

“I just felt my groin when I made a run down the wing late in the game but I don’t think it’s too serious.

“It had been good to score the equaliser, I’d moved inside from the wing when Thorsten Stuckmann took a goalkick.

“The ball flicked off one of their players, then Jack King got a touch and I found myself one-on-one with the keeper.

“As soon as I went through I was confident I was going to score and their keeper made my mind up pretty much straight away.

“I managed to slot it past him and it was really nice to see the ball roll into the net.

“After that I thought we might have gone on to claim the three points because we’d dominated for large parts of the game.

“We had some great chances to put the game to bed and just weren’t quite clinical enough in the Coventry box.

“But there were a lot of good things out there, things we can definitely build on over the coming games.”

North End had trailed to a 21st minute goal from Sky Blues midfielder James Bailey which turned out to be the hosts’ only effort on target of the game.

Graham Westley’s men responded by carving out a number of decent chances, with Graham Cummins and Andy Procter both going close, while a David Amoo shot bounced off the bar.

Amoo had been a last minute inclusion in the side after Stuart Beavon injured his hip in the warm-up.

Holmes said: “We didn’t look for an excuses when Stuart hurt himself, it’s the sort of thing you have to deal with and not hide behind. Arguably it was one of our best performances away from home, especially in the second half. Maybe we weren’t quite at our best in the first half although we had some good chances to at least be drawing.

“We knew at half time that we were still in the game and just had to step things up a little bit.

“In the second half we did that, it’s just a shame we didn’t come away with all three points rather than one.

“Had the equaliser come a little bit sooner, perhaps we would have gone on to win it.”

Holmes and Beavon were joined on the injured list by Procter, the midfielder suffering concussion in a first-half clash of heads.

Procter played on until the 52nd minute, the concussion causing him to be sick on the touchline moments before the second half started.

North End return to action on Boxing Day when Bury visit Deepdale, with that followed by another home clash with Doncaster on Saturday – both games have a 3pm kick-off.