Stoke City fans have been underwhelmed at their start to the season. The Potters, who are among six favourites tipped for promotion by bookmakers, have picked up just one point from their first two Championship games and are yet to find the back of the net.
Preston, meanwhile, picked up their first point against Norwich City in front of around 1,000 of their supporters last time out, with their game against the Canaries chosen as one of the EFL games to pilot the safe return of fans amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Alex Neil and his men will be buoyed by that result and will look to take the positivity gained from it into their game against a Stoke side that are still finding their feet after a number of signings arrived in the summer.
Preston North End vs Stoke City Head-to-head
Preston have enjoyed their fixtures against Stoke City for the most part in recent years.
The hosts have lost just two of their last 15 games against the Potters and have not tasted defeat at home to them since September 2005.
The Lilywhites are unbeaten in five games against the Staffordshire outfit, winning four of those.
Stoke have picked up just four points at Deepdale since 2000 and clearly don’t look forward to the trip to Lancashire.
Preston North End vs Stoke City Team News
Alex Neil will be without Daniel Johnson who is currently nursing a knock, but otherwise has a number of options available for this weekend’s match-up.
Injured: Daniel Johnson
James McClean may start despite various reports linking him to Scottish giants Celtic this week – speculation Stoke manager Michael O’Neill has dismissed.
Meanwhile, Tyrese Campbell could make a start up front for the Potters following his winning goal against Gillingham in the League Cup on Thursday.
Injured: Joe Allen, Thibauld Verlinden
Doubtful: Ryan Shawcross
Preston North End vs Stoke City Predicted XI
Preston North End predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Declan Rudd, Darnell Fisher, Patrick Bauer, Ben Davies, Joe Rafferty, Ben Pearson, Ryan Ledson, Scott Sinclair, Alan Browne, Tom Barkhuizen, Sean Maguire
Stoke City predicted XI (3-5-2): Adam Davies, Tommy Smith, James Chester, Danny Batth, Bruno Martins Indi, Morgan Fox, Nick Powell, John Obi Mikel, Sam Clucas, James McClean, Tyrese Campbell
Preston North End vs Stoke City Prediction
Preston have been a thorn in Stoke’s side in recent years, with the Potters not fairing too well at Deepdale.
That being said, Preston would be unwise to write off Stoke and underestimate their opponents. The Potters proved last season that they can be ruthless if given the opportunity.
Michael O’Neill is still tinkering with his starting XI to find which players suit his system best, so Preston may be able take some sort of foot hold in this game. The two rivals could end this battle in a draw.
Prediction: Preston North End 1-1 Stoke CityPublished 24 Sep 2020, 17:37 IST