Absence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder
Three days after they met in the FA Cup Crystal Palace take on Preston at Deepdale in the league. With a Cup replay in the not too distant future these teams will soon be sick of the sight of each other. But Preston could well be saying goodbye to one of their prize assets.
The rumours that David Nugent is in discussions with Everton about a possible deadline day transfer is undoubtedly good news for Iain Dowie's side. Preston are unbeaten in 20 games and tonight's game will provide a stern test for the Eagles, irrespective of Nugent's participation.
One man who is going nowhere is boss Billy Davies. Preston have confidently rebuffed Leicester's approach to discuss the viability of Davies replacing Craig Levein as their manager. The granite like Scot has impressed in his time at Deepdale, and is carving himself an impressive reputation.
After Saturday's Cup draw both teams will be eager for a victory as they chase promotion. Brett Ormerod, signed from Southampton could make his debut for Preston. After starting with four strikers dotted around the pitch, and several players rested, Dowie is likely to make changes.
Either through injury or lack of recognised personnel Palace have had to play out much of this campaign with only one traditional wide midfielder taking the field. Could the Palace fans be lucky enough to see two recognised wingers in McAnuff and Reich, starting a game together? If the answer to that question is yes, and Johnson and Morrison start upfront, Preston's formidable run could well come to an end this evening.