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First Team News

Gaffer Talks Wigan Athletic, Home Form And Team Selection

23 February 2023

First Team News

Gaffer Talks Wigan Athletic, Home Form And Team Selection

23 February 2023

Manager Ryan Lowe said there’s “no better chance” for Preston North End to kickstart their home form, with two games at Deepdale coming up in the space of four days.

The Lilywhites will host Wigan Athletic firstly on Saturday in a local clash, with kick-off at 3pm, before Coventry City arrive in Lancashire on Tuesday evening.

PNE’s last home game saw them come from a goal down with ten men against Luton Town, prior to taking a point on the road from Hull City last weekend.

On the games coming up, Ryan said: “I’m looking forward to getting back to Deepdale.

“I think the positive reaction we had after the Luton game and then going away to Hull, with the two points we collected, the lads are champing at the bit now.

“We know it’s time. We know we’ve not been good enough at home, but now’s the time to hopefully put on a performance and get a positive result.

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“But there’s a Wigan team – who are a little bit different now compared to what they were a few weeks ago – standing in our way, but we’ve got to worry about what we can do because they’re definitely a lot better than what they’ve been.”

That improvement in their form has coincided with the arrival of Shaun Maloney as manager, following the departure of Kolo Toure, who oversaw nine winless games.

During the Scot’s short term in charge at the DW Stadium, the Latics have gone four games unbeaten, conceding just one goal in that period.

Ryan said: “They’re picking up points. The manager’s gone in there and changed a few things round, got the lads on side and got them playing the right way, defending the right way, and attacking the right way.

“They’ve got some good quality players in there, but what we can’t do is we can’t worry too much about them.

“We’ve got to worry about us. As always we’ll pay them the respect they deserve, but ultimately they’re coming to our turf where we haven’t been good enough over the course of the season and we’ve got to now change that and turn that around, so our main focus is about what we can do.

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“It’s a local derby, with potential bragging rights at stake for so many fans, but it’s important that Preston North End go out and perform and hopefully get a result.”

The manager will be without Ben Whiteman and Ched Evans, with both serving suspensions, while Ali McCann and Emil Riis remain sidelined.

Defender Andrew Hughes is a doubt, having gone off injured in last weekend’s draw against Hull City, and Ryan said he will be assessed ahead of Saturday, but he won’t be rushed back.

You can watch the full interview with the manager on iFollow PNE.

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