Preston North End definitely fall under the ‘potential dark horses’ tag heading into 2022/23, after making some positive strides under Ryan Lowe last season.
The Lilywhites looked far more dangerous in Lowe’s three at the back system than they were under Frankie McAvoy and excitement will be building amongst the supporter base in the coming weeks.
Four intriguing summer additions have made their way to Deepdale in the form of Freddie Woodman, David Cornell, Ben Woodburn and Robbie Brady, as Lowe begins to assemble a squad in his own image.
Bambo Diaby signed a two-year deal at the club this summer, after showcasing his ability in seven Championship appearances last term, and the 24-year-old will need to assert himself in pre-season to fight for a starting berth this term.
Diaby took to Twitter to express his emotions as the season approaches.
He wrote: “𝐁𝐚𝐜𝐤 𝐢𝐧 𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧…
“The hard work continues!”
— Bambo Diaby (@BamboDiabyDiaby) July 15, 2022
Andrew Hughes, Liam Lindsay, Patrick Bauer and Jordan Storey could all be ahead of Diaby in the pecking order at Deepdale, with the latter enjoying an impressive loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday last term.
Putting further importance on performances and attitudes in pre-season, with Lowe yet to decide on a starting XI to tackle the season’s opener.
Quiz: Can you identify the 10 fake Preston North End facts?
Preston are stepping up their preparation with friendlies against Accrington Stanley, Heart of Midlothian and Leicester City, before they begin the campaign away to newly promoted Wigan Athletic.
An opening fixture against a newly promoted side did not go according to plan last season and Hull City ran riot at Deepdale to seal a 4-1 win.
North End utilised the loan market very well last season, with Daniel Iversen, Sepp van den Berg and Cameron Archer all having an impressive impact dropping down from the Premier League.
These kinds of moves tend to happen later on in the window when top-flight clubs have assessed their squad, and Preston may be preparing to pounce again.