It has been something of an underwhelming to the season for Preston North End.
Although Alex Neil’s side have recorded some impressive results away from home, the Lilywhites have yet to pick up a single point in the five league games they have played at Deepdale.
That is something that Neil will obviously be desperate to change as soon as possible, and it could certainly be argued that there are some rarely-seen options in his squad, that the Preston boss could turn to in an order to turn his side’s form around.
With that in mind, we’ve taken a look at two underrated players Neil has available to him in his squad, that the Preston boss ought to consider giving more first-team opportunities to.
Preston North End are not a club you generally associate with spending big in the summer transfer window, so you might have expected Tom Bayliss to have enjoyed more opportunities at Deepdale.
Reports suggested that Preston went close to equalling their record transfer of £1.5million to bring Bayliss to Deepdale from Coventry in the summer of 2019, but since then, he has made just one substitute appearances for North End in the league.
Given what they paid for Bayliss, you feel he has to be given his chance in the Championship sooner rather than later, and given he previously showed he can cope with the step up, going from League Two to League One admirably with Coventry, that is something he could possess the adaptability to cope with.
Can you get 20/20 on this quiz about Preston’s current squad?
Given the promising start he made to his senior career with Preston – keeping a clean sheet after coming in as last minute injury cover in a 1-0 win over Reading as an 18-year-old – the trajectory of Earl’s career again has been somewhat unexpected.
Having been given a handful of opportunities in both the 2017/18 and 2018/19 seasons, Earl found himself shipped out on loan to League One first with Bolton and then Ipswich across the course of the 2019/20 season.
But having still shown plenty of potential across his short career so far, and with Preston not exactly stacked with options in Earl’s natural left-back position, you feel he has to get another chance in Neil’s side sooner rather than later.