No revenge mission for PNE

Tom Clarke
Tom Clarke
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Simon Grayson insists there will be no element of revenge on Preston North End’s part as they go in search of victory against MK Dons tomorrow.

The PNE boss is targeting three points to help his side settle into the Championship rather than to avenge Karl Robinson’s men pipping them to automatic promotion at the end of last season.

For the vast majority of the run-in, the Lilywhites held the upper hand over MK thanks to a 2-0 victory at stadium:mk in March.

That was the last time they lost a competitive game, a strong finish to the campaign seeing them leapfrog North End right at the death.

Grayson said: “I don’t think we have a bone to pick with them, if anything they will have a bone to pick with us given we turned them over at their place last season after putting in a really good performance.

“That is all part of history now, ultimately we both got to where we wanted to be and it does not matter in what order we did it.

“MK Dons started very well at Rotherham last weekend, I went to that game and they were impressive.

“They play the same way as always – Karl is not going to change his philosophy whatever division they are in.

“Like us, they have kept together a hard core of players who got them promoted.

“It should be a good game, they will try to impose their passing game on us and cause us problems.

“I’m sure they will be aware of our threats too. Hopefully we can come out on top.”

Grayson has a couple of injury concerns for the trip to Buckinghamshire.

A knock picked up in pre-season kept Jermaine Beckford out of the opening two games against Middlesbrough and Crewe.

Tom Clarke was also ruled out of the Crewe clash with a foot injury collected in the first half against Boro.

“Jermaine is making progress and we will wait and see where he is up to,” said Grayson.

“Tom is another one who we hope to have available, he had got a knock on his foot.

“He did it when he mistimed that tackle in the Middlesbrough game, it looked nasty at the time.

“Tom being the tough cookie that he is, carried on for the full game and was sore afterwards.”

Bailey Wright’s fitness will also be checked, the defender having taken a knock on the top of thigh at Crewe.

The fact that two defenders are carrying injuries perhaps highlights an area of the squad which Grayson would like to strengthen.

New keeper Chris Kirkland will be on the bench tomorrow having joined on a Bosman during the week.

North End have been drawn at home to Premier League new boys Watford in the second round of the Capital One Cup.

The tie will take place at Deepdale in the week commencing August 24.