Preston North End welcome Derby County to Deepdale this afternoon with both clubs level on 57 points. The two sides are separated by just one goal, with the home side sat in seventh spot and Derby a place behind.
Preston North End Host Derby County in Battle For Sixth
Last Time Out
Preston come into the clash off the back of a 3-1 defeat by fellow play-off contenders, Cardiff City.
The reverse fixture at Pride Park last November saw Derby come out winners in a narrow 1-0 victory.
Preston in Poor Form
Alex Neil’s Preston side are currently in woeful form, having picked up just one point from their last five matches.
A draw against lowly Luton Town was followed by a tough loss at home to Cardiff City since the restart. Each of those four defeats has seen Neil’s men concede at least two goals per game.
The visitors to Deepdale, for the 5 pm kick-off, have hit a purple patch recently. Phillip Cocu’s side have won their last four league games which spans either side of the lockdown.
Additionally, the Rams also secured back-to-back away wins for the first time this season after their 3-2 win away to Millwall.
Derby Face First Test of Many
The East Midlands Club take on the Lilywhites in the first of a string of tough fixtures. After Derby’s clash with Preston, they’ll go on to play five of the top six, making the fixture at Deepdale an even more important game.
Both Paul Gallagher and Sean Maguire could return to the starting line-up for Preston; a first start since January could also be awarded to defender Paul Huntington.
Derby will be without Tom Lawrence after an altercation with Matt Miazga after the full-time whistle in Derby’s win over Reading saw him handed a three-match ban.
Andre Wisdom will also be missing from the Derby starting XI after the defender was stabbed and robbed early on Sunday morning. The 27-year-old is reported to be in a stable condition in hospital.
Both Jack Marriott and Krystian Bielik still remain sidelined as they recover from long-term injuries.