Martin O'Neill was adamant Nottingham Forest were denied a perfectly good goal as they were held to a 0-0 draw away to Preston.

Joe Lolley had the ball in the back of the net 12 minutes from time at Deepdale only for it to be ruled out because of a foul on Declan Rudd by Ryan Yates.

Forest boss O'Neill insisted that Rudd had simply fumbled the ball, and this latest controversy follows the late equaliser conceded against West Brom on Tuesday.

On that occasion Jay Rodriguez scored from the spot after Dwight Gayle had gone down. The Baggies striker has since been hit with a two-match ban for simulation.

And with Forest just outside the Sky Bet Championship play-off places, O'Neill was understandably frustrated at seeing more points slip away.

He said: "We should have taken all three points. The goal should have stood in the second half.

"The keeper spilt the ball and it was there to fight for. We have been robbed of all three points again. That is four points in two games.

"It should have counted and I told the referee (Tim Robinson) after the game that he should look at it again. These are the points that you cannot get back.

"At the start of the season you can ignore this and hope it levels itself out. That is a lot of points to lose out on at this stage of the season.

"We had the better chances in the first half and I thought we were going to score.

"We started slowly and had to defend strongly and Preston got confidence from beating Norwich in midweek.

"As we got into the game we created decent chances and deserved to get all three points.

"Overall I was pleased with the effort of the side, they put in a big shift on Tuesday night and to come here and do it again is very good.

"Preston are a good side and in good form and I am pleased with the team."

It was a poor quality game, with Forest also having a Lewis Grabban goal ruled out for offside.

Preston enjoyed a few chances of their own early on, but were not able to take them, and manager Alex Neil admitted the standard was below that shown by his side in recent weeks.

He said: "It wasn't great was it? But we had three good opportunities in the first half and if one of those goes in it's a very different game.

"Sean Maguire got man-handled six or seven times in the first half. It was a day for defenders. Not a lot of quality at the top end.

"The first 10 minutes was key for us, if we had got the early goal it would have brought Forest out and made them more expansive.

"Lewis Grabban is excellent as this level but Ben Davies is a top centre-back and he dealt with him really well which was pleasing.

"I said to the lads if someone had told us we would get the results we have done over the last seven games, and played the way we have, we would have been buzzing.

"I like to watch a good game of football and that wasn't was it? So I'm disappointed."