Preston North End host Hull City on Saturday looking to get back on track after they fell to a frustrating 1-0 defeat at home to Millwall last weekend, which dented the Lilywhites’ recent momentum.
Alex Neil’s side headed into the game looking to build on their back to back wins away from home against Wigan Athletic and Stoke City, but instead they saw their six-match unbeaten run in the Championship brought to an end as Millwall closed the gap on them to just four points.
Despite the defeat, though, Preston still head into the weekend in sixth place in the table, and they will be looking to secure all three points against a Hull side who have been struggling for form over the last few weeks, with a win enabling the Lilywhites to consolidate their play-off place.
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Neil’s side could receive a boost in their hopes of getting back to winning ways at Deepdale against Hull, with the Preston boss confirming ahead of the game that Darnell Fisher could be set to make a return to action, after the right-back was forced to miss last weekend’s defeat against Millwall with a minor problem with his hamstring.
Preston could also be set to receive another boost on the injury front in the next few weeks, with Neil confirming that Billy Bodin is beginning to make some progress, as he steps up his recover from an Achilles injury, which he suffered in training and has kept him out of action over the last month or so, although Saturday will come too soon for the attacker.
The news is less encouraging with regards to long-term absentee Tom Bayliss, with Neil suggesting that the midfielder could potentially be set to miss the rest of the campaign, having had surgery on an ankle injury that he suffered in training in mid-January, which has ruled him out of action for the last month – and that has prevented the 20-year-old from being able to break into the first team.
The Lilywhites, though, have managed to get both Andrew Hughes and Paul Gallagher through the last few matches unharmed following their recent returns from injuries, and Neil will be hopeful that his squad do not suffer any more injury problems on Saturday against Hull.