After conceding two or more goals in eight of their last nine games, Preston are set for a tough challenge when they face the Championship’s top scorers West Brom in a bid to climb of the foot of the table.
There was familiar frustration for Alex Neil in the Carabao Cup defeat on Tuesday night with his side continuing to concede goals despite scoring two of their own, with North End currently unable to keep hold of a lead.
On a positive note, PNE were the better team and for the second-half in particular were dominant, creating lots of chances with Callum Robinson putting in another excellent display, but were unable to put a much changed Middlesborough side to bed.
The statistics are not exactly in favour of the Lilywhites going into the game at Deepdale as they have conceded 18 goals in nine Championship games, that being the most of any other team in the division.
On the contrary, the Baggies have managed to score 22 goals already in the league, with the likes of Jay Rodriguez and Dwight Gayle proving to be clinical in this division which has seen no other team score more at this early stage.
In the last week or so North End have been able to welcome back the defensive midfield pairing of Ben Pearson and Ryan Ledson, who both played together in the Carabao Cup defeat against Middlesborough on Tuesday night.
Despite this, Callum Woods is still out injured with a knee problem which has seen him unavailable since the middle of August when PNE faced Morecambe.
There was positive news regarding last season’s top goal scorer Sean Maguire as Alex Neil confirmed he has started to train with the first team, but he may not be available until after the next international break.
As a result of his injury suffered in pre-season Billy Bodin is still out injured and will not be back until next year.
This is a historic fixture with 110 matches played between the two sides over the years which has seen West Brom come out on top with 45 wins, North End not far behind with 39 victories themselves.
With West Brom scoring for fun and Preston having just one clean sheet in the league this season, you would expect goals in this one, whilst North End have also scored four goals in their last two games.
My prediction: PNE 2-2 West Brom
My XI vs West Brom
Fisher Huntington Davies Earl
Barkhuizen Browne Barker
Picture credit: Preston North End