Preston are back in action this weekend as they host Bristol City at Deepdale on Saturday afternoon.

North End have been in great form in the Championship of late, and have a strong record against the Robins; it’s more than eight years since Preston lost to Bristol City.

They have been in impressive form themselves though, so Alex Neil must look to name a side capable of picking up all three points and continuing the 100% start to the season at home.

Having rested players against Manchester City, Neil has some key players fully fit and ready to go – and with that in mind, here’s our predicted XI for Saturday’s clash.


Goalkeeper and back four

Connor Ripley was given the nod against Manchester City, but that’s unlikely to continue this weekend. Declan Rudd will most likely reclaim his spot, having started every league game this season.

Preston North End’s Patrick Bauer in action with Brentford’s Said Benrahma. (Photo by Mick Walker – CameraSport via Getty Images)

Darnell Fisher and Ben Davies should keep their place from the City game at right back and centre back respectively. Joe Rafferty fared well at left back but is likely to drop back out again for Andrew Hughes, with Patrick Bauer joining Davies in the heart of defence.

Middle of the park

Ben Pearson and Paul Gallagher were both rested against Manchester City, with Alex Neil saving the duo for this weekend. Ryan Ledson and Alan Browne started in the engine room on Tuesday night, but will likely drop out for Pearson and Gallagher.

Preston North End’s Manager Alex Neil talks to Ben Pearson. (Photo by Mick Walker – CameraSport via Getty Images)

Daniel Johnson kept his place as the number 10 against City, and it would be a surprise to see him miss out here. Johnson scored against Bristol City at Deepdale last season, and will be looking to do the same again.

In attack

Billy Bodin should be back available, giving Neil a tough choice between him and Josh Harrop. Harrop played against both Birmingham City and Manchester City, meaning we’re going with Bodin to play on the right.

That will leave Seani Maguire on the left and Tom Barkhuizen up top, looking to use his pace to get in behind an injury-hit Bristol City defence; they’re without Tomas Kalas, and likely Nathan Baker and Bailey Wright too.

On the bench

Connor Ripley, Jordan Rafferty, Jordan Storey, Ryan Ledson, Alan Browne, Brad Potts and Josh Harrop is the best guess at the bench, after all featured against City in midweek.

That would mean Andre Green, Josh Ginnelly, Jayden Stockley and Tom Bayliss would all miss out, but don’t rule out a midfielder – most probably Potts – dropping out for Stockley or David Nugent as another striking option.

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