Preston North End vs Birmingham City preview: Team news, predicted lineups, ones to watch and how to watch
Image from gettyimages/ Jan Kruger

Preston North End will be hoping to end their baron run at home against stubborn visitors in Aitor Karanka's Birmingham City on Saturday.

Not only have Alex Neil's side lost all of their first four home games this season, but they are also yet to register a goal at Deepdale, most recently in their 2-0 defeat at home to Millwall on Wednesday.

The Blues had a much better midweek as they claimed their first win since their opening day victory against Brentford by beating Huddersfield Town 2-1 at St. Andrews, thanks to Lukas Jutkiewicz's last minute goal.

  • Team news

Hosts Preston will be looking to make several changes ahead of this weekend's clash with Darnell Fisher and Ben Pearson hoping to return to the side following their respective injuries, but it might just be too soon for defender Ben Davies.

The Lilywhites had several players suffering from illnesses prior to their match with Millwall on Wednesday, including defender Patrick Bauer, who had to be substituted at half-time.

The visitors have talisman Lukas Jutkiewicz back in contention to start after coming on off the bench to score the winner on Wednesday, he had been out due to testing positive for COVID-19.

However, Aitor Karanka will be without midfielder Adam Clayton, who fought through the pain barrier to finish the game on Wednesday after taking a knock.

  • Predicted lineups

Preston North End (4-2-3-1): Rudd; Fisher, Storey, Huntington, Hughes; Pearson, Browne; Barkhuizen, Johnson, Sinclair; Riis.

Birmingham City (4-5-1): Etheridge; Colin, Dean, Friend, Pedersen; Sanchez, Gardner, San Jose, Sunjic, Bela; Jutkiewicz.

  • Ones to watch

Winger Scott Sinclair has been Preston's biggest threat in front of goal so far this season. The 31-year-old has four goals and one assist to his name, already beating his tally from last season.

Ivan Sanchez was brought to St. Andrews by compatriot Aitor Karanka in the summer and has registered two assists from the wing thus far. He won the man of the match award on Wednesday and should relish from the return of Lukas Jutkiewicz.

  • Previous meetings

Preston did the double on their weekend opponents last season, including a 2-0 victory at Deepdale in July. Patrick Bauer and Brad Potts were both on the score sheet that day. Birmingham haven't beaten Preston at Deepdale since February 2001.

  • How to watch

This game is a 3:00pm kick-off and will be available to watch on both sides' respective iFollow page for £10.

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