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Early team news emerges ahead of Preston North End’s clash with Birmingham City



Preston North End manager Frankie McAvoy has revealed that Ched Evans, Tom Barkhuizen and Matthew Olosunde are all set to miss the club’s clash with Birmingham City this weekend.

Meanwhile, Connor Wickham is also set to be sidelined due to a muscular injury whilst his team-mate Patrick Bauer could be in line to feature for the Lilywhites at St Andrew’s.

Scott Sinclair may also be in contention to make his return to action against Birmingham after recovering from a bout of illness.

Preston set up a clash with Liverpool in the fourth round of the League Cup earlier this week by securing a 4-1 victory over Cheltenham Town.

Goals from Andrew Hughes, Joe Rafferty, Sean Maguire and Emil Riis Jakobsen allowed the Lilywhites to ease past their League One opponents.

Set to return to Championship action on Saturday, it will be intriguing to see whether Preston will be able to use the momentum gained from their triumph over Cheltenham to their advantage in their showdown with Birmingham.

McAvoy’s side may fancy their chances of securing a positive result in this particular fixture as the Blues have lost three of their last five games in all competitions.

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Speaking in his pre-match press conference (as cited by the club’s official Twitter account) about Evans, Barkhuizen, Olosunde and Sinclair, McAvoy said: “Scott had a virus and he’s feeling better now.

“Ched isn’t too far away either so it’s looking a little better.

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Ted Harper is Preston's all time top scorer.

“The weekend will probably be too early for Ched Evans, Matthew Olosunde and Tom Barkhuizen, and we will see where we are with Scott.”

Making reference to Bauer, the Preston boss admitted: “He will be fit and ready to go on Saturday.”

The Verdict

Whilst McAvoy would have been hoping to call upon the services of some of these aforementioned players, he will now need to look elsewhere for inspiration.

Having witnessed his side pick up a point against West Bromwich Albion last weekend, the 54-year-old will be hoping to guide his side to another positive performance in their clash with Birmingham.

When you consider that Bauer is currently averaging an impressive WhoScored match rating of 7.11 in the Championship, it wouldn’t be at all surprising if he helps his side secure a third league win of the season.

Providing that Preston are able to seal all three points in this fixture, they could use the momentum gained from this result to push on in the second-tier in the coming weeks.

Freelance writer for Football League World. Previously worked for 90min & GiveMeSport.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Early team news emerges ahead of Preston North End’s clash with Birmingham City

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