Ipswich Town manager Kieran McKenna felt his side deserved more from this afternoon's 3-2 defeat at Preston North End.

Will Keane's finish and George Edmundson's own goal put the hosts 2-0 up inside eight minutes, with former Blues forward Keane making it 3-0 just before half-time after the Blues got in a muddle playing out the back.

Deadline day signing Kieffer Moore was introduced at the break and scored twice in the latter stages to set up an exciting finale, but it was ultimately too little, too late.

"Yeah, it was it a difficult half," reflected McKenna. "It was a difficult place to come anyway, but when you concede two goals, two very unfortunate goals, in the first eight or nine minutes... The first goal is a shot from maybe 30 yards that takes a big deflection, the second goal is two yards offside. It's so clear, it can't not be given by the linesman. George has made an aggressive decision to step up, but it's the right decision when the striker is two yards offside. The linesman can't miss it.

"You're 2-0 down after eight minutes. That's probably the worst situation that it could be because Preston can then defend their box with a lot of bodies. Of course we lacked a little bit in the final third. We lacked the profile and the presence in the final third. That was exaggerated by the scoreline which completely dictated the tone and the feel of the game. Preston were able to feel like they were doing well in the game because they had the goals.

"At half-time, honestly, my feeling was that we were still right in the game. On the balance I didn't think certain things were too far off. We just needed to improve in the final third and we needed to not have anything else go against us.

"We certainly produced a really good performance in the second half that I think deserved to get us something from the game."

He continued: "I think it's a day where, in the first half, pretty much everything that could go wrong did go wrong and we find ourselves 3-0 down in a really tough stadium. The players have still produced a really good second half though that I think deserved to get something out of the game.

"Look, it's disappointing not to get the win. We've not had as many wins lately as what we would like (one in eight in the league), but we've also not lost many games, we're competitive every week, the group keeps fighting to the end of each game and those qualities will stand us in good stead. We'll continue to work and come back stronger."

Asked if he felt his side's poor start was a hangover from last weekend's FA Cup defeat at the hands of non-league side Maidstone United, the Blues boss replied: "No, I honestly don't think it is. We weren't ourselves, but when you go 2-0 down to Preston... Of course the goals we need to own and look at, but the first goal has a large, large chunk of misfortune and the second goal is officiating. We can still do better on our blocking technique, but away to Preston, with the type of team they are and the profile of players we had on the pitch, it was always going to be a difficult half."

On Moore's instant impact, he said: "He showed straight away what we've been missing, to be fair, since George (Hirst) has been out. He gave us that physical profile on the top line that creates space for others and also gives a target in the box to play into or cross to. His impact was there for all to see. I thought he did excellent and that gives us something to build on next week."

Asked if he had considered starting the Bournemouth loanee, McKenna replied: "Not really, to be honest. You can always take the gamble, but I don't think it would have been the right thing to do. He hadn't even trained with the group. He's here for the next 17 games to have an impact, not just today. So we weren't overly tempted by that."

Ali Al-Hamadi, the recent £1m+ recruit from AFC Wimbledon, also came on in the second half to make his Town debut. 

"He showed some of his dynamism in the final third and some of his physicality around the box. It was good to get him on the pitch as well," said McKenna.

"We had so many chances in the second half and the (3,500+) supporters behind the goal were fantastic. The disappointment is that we weren't able to get the next goal."

Asked for his thoughts on Preston's killer third goal, which came after Hladky's short pass out Sam Morsy under pressure, McKenna said: "We lost a ball on build-up. Look, I fully support the players in that position because they have tried to do the right thing and something that's brought us success over the last two years. We didn't quite execute it right. That's never a problem with me when our intent's right because it's a style and a system that we believe in. We've had successes from it and we'll continue to do so.

"That's football. Over the course of the season these things can happen. The moments where Vas hooks it forwards with his left foot and they head it back down the middle of the pitch and score never gets noticed, but of course the one where you lose the ball in that situation does. 

"In the second half we had the option to go over the press, which we like to do, and we were able to utilise that well. We'll continue to work on all phases of the game."

Town have slipped to fourth in the Championship table ahead of next Saturday's visit of West Brom to Portman Road.

"Look, there's 46 games," said McKenna. "That's only the fourth game we've lost in the league this year. It's a fantastic effort. We know it's not all going to be sunny days.

"There are teams around us with fantastic squads in incredible form and if we use up any of our energy focusing on them we won't have the required energy to be competitive every week."