Hull 1-2 Preston: Callum Robinson secures win for North End
By Press Association
Last Updated: 26/09/17 11:18pm
Callum Robinson headed a late winner as Preston beat Hull 2-1 at the KCOM Stadium to extend the home side's winless run in the Sky Bet Championship to five games.
Tom Barkhuizen gave Preston a well-deserved lead after 37 minutes, but the half-time introduction of Kamil Grosicki transformed Hull and they equalised through Jarrod Bowen.
However, the high-flying visitors demonstrated once more they are no pushovers and Robinson headed home following a break down the right by fellow substitute Daryl Horgan.
Despite his side's poor run of form, Tigers boss Leonid Slutsky stuck with the side which drew 1-1 at Reading, while Preston boss Alex Neil brought in Alan Browne for Josh Harrop from the side who were held to a goalless draw with Millwall.
The visitors dominated from the start and created the game's first opening after eight minutes as Jordan Hugill fired over from 20 yards.
Allan McGregor slipped taking the resulting goal kick, with the ball rolling to Sean Maguire. He played in Browne down the right, but the midfielder spurned the opportunity to shoot in favour of attempting a return pass which was scrambled clear.
It took 20 minutes for the hosts to register a shot on target, and when they did Fraizer Campbell's 25-yard effort failed to seriously test Chris Maxwell in the Preston goal.
Preston continued to probe, and Daniel Johnson's clever ball over the top after 33 minutes picked out Barkhuizen, whose volley was well stopped by McGregor before Michael Dawson hacked Browne's follow-up off the line.
Hull countered and Bowen's deflected effort from range forced a smart stop from Maxwell. Four minutes later the away side deservedly took the lead. Dawson was booked for complaining to referee James Linington about the award of a free-kick, and Hull's sense of injustice was exacerbated as Paul Huntington's header was parried by McGregor, with Barkhuizen lashing home the rebound.
Poland international Grosicki, absent at the weekend with a knock, replaced Fikayo Tomori at the break as Slutsky abandoned his back three, and the move paid dividends five minutes after half-time. Grosicki's free-kick was headed back across goal by Campbell, and Bowen slid the ball into an empty net as North End's defence switched off.
Barkhuizen's good work down the right after 61 minutes was wasted when he overcooked a pass to Maguire, who would have had a clear sight of goal.
Huntington's effort was blocked by McGregor after Hull failed to clear their lines from a corner, while Maguire failed to get enough power into his shot after Johnson picked him out at the end of a swift Preston counter attack. Hull were growing into the game, however, and Huntington did well to block David Meyler's strike before Maxwell superbly tipped Grosiki's follow-up onto the bar.
The influential Grosicki then found Michael Hector five yards out with a 79th-minute cross, but the on-loan Chelsea defender inexplicably headed over. Robinson then settled the contest two minutes from time as he headed into an empty net after Horgan beat Max Clark and delivered a perfect cross.
Leonid Slutsky: "I say sorry to the supporters because I understand they must be disappointed because we don't bring results, I don't bring results. It's very difficult speaking about a performance when you concede in the last minute and it's not the first time. In this situation it's possible to lose confidence because everyone is frustrated now and it's very difficult, because each match is very close. In each match we have chances to win but we can't.
"When you don't win some matches you lose confidence. We try to change our mentality in this situation but you can't change your mentality if you don't have a winner in this situation - you must do it, not speak it. When you don't win five matches in a row of course you lose confidence. It's a new team and results are important for developing."
Alex Neil: "It was a great result. I thought over the piece we deserved to win the game.
"I had a real decision as to whether I bust the game open with an aggressive substitute or being happy with a point, but I made the decision to go for the game and they rewarded me by winning the match - one sub creating the goal and one sub scoring the goal."