The international break came at probably the worst possible time for Preston North End who were on a three-match winning run before players went off to their countries.
It was a far cry from the opening three Championship matches of the season that the Lilywhites contested – in which they lost all of them to Hull, Reading and Huddersfield Town respectively.
Frankie McAvoy was under a lot of pressure to turn things around quickly and wins against Peterborough and Swansea City, which came either side of Carabao Cup success against fellow Lancashire side Morecambe, have lifted the mood at Deepdale.
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What has also upped the spirits are the deadline day arrivals of Ali McCann from St Johnstone and Josh Murphy on loan from Cardiff City – but will either man start in tomorrow’s away clash with Bristol City? Let’s take a look at McAvoy’s potential line-up.
It pretty much picks itself, doesn’t it?
The same 11 players that started against Swansea will more-than likely contest the match against the Robins at Ashton Gate, providing both Daniel Johnson and Sepp van den Berg have come through their international excursions unscathed.
Murphy has already pulled on the North End shirt with a 45-minute reserve team appearance against Walsall on Tuesday, but he will have to settle for a place on the bench to start with.
As will McCann, who played twice for Northern Ireland in the last week and only had his first training session with his new team-mates today.
McAvoy may choose to leave McCann out entirely for this particular match, however he does seem to have high energy reserves which could be useful in the later stages of tomorrow’s match if North End are trying to hold onto a lead.
It doesn’t look like McAvoy will have too many selection headaches going into the match though with all 11 players selected against the Swans looking likely to keep their places.