PNE will get it Wright this time

Bailey Wright is looking forward to PNE's game against Brentford
Bailey Wright is looking forward to PNE's game against Brentford
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Bailey Wright says it will be a much-improved Preston North End side which faces Brentford this weekend compared to the one beaten by the Bees four months ago.

The 2-1 loss in London came during a sticky September for PNE and resulted in the squad being called in on their Sunday off to watch a re-run of the game on DVD.

Since then, the Lilywhites have lost only four games in the Championship and head into Saturday’s clash at Deepdale in 13th place.

Centre-half Wright told the Evening Post: “At Brentford in the first half, we played well and took the lead very early.

“In the second half we fell away and they scored two goals close together to win it.

“We needed a bit of a kick after that game and since then we have gone on to get some good results.

“Sometimes you get a game where you just don’t click and you have to use it to try and kick you on.

“We have steadily climbed the table over the last few months and if we were to beat Brentford, we would jump above them.

“It will be a tough game, they have some very good players.

“We go into it on the back of two god away results against Bristol City and Ipswich.

“It was important to get a win at Bristol City, a side below us in the league.

“We did a job that night, it wasn’t a pretty game but we got three points.

“I thought that the draw at Ipswich was probably a fair result, although we did play very well in the first half.

“Our job is to keep putting points on the board so that we are able to look up the table rather than down it. We want to try and catch more of the teams above us.”

Wright is back to full fitness after an injury forced his exit at half time in the win against Rotherham on January 2.

He was an unused sub at Peterborough in the FA Cup before returning to play in both the Bristol City and Ipswich matches.

The Australia international said: “I got quite a bad back spasm in the first half against Rotherham.

“It came on suddenly, I was marking one of their lads at a corner when my back locked.

“I was struggling to run – every time I lifted up my left knee to start a run, it was very painful.

“It took me a couple of days to get it right, our physio Matt Jackson worked on the trigger points and got the muscle to relax a lot more.

“I’m fine now. I was on the bench at Peterborough and would have been fit to start that game if chosen.”

The make-up of North End’s defence against Brentford will hinge on the fitness of skipper Tom Clarke.

He tweaked a groin muscle in the warm-up before the Ipswich game and had to be replaced in the starting XI by Calum Woods.

Said Wright: “It was a late change to the team but we didn’t let it affect us.

“We are fortunate to have a good squad, with people like Calum or Marnick Vermijl ready to come in.

“Calum did well even though most of his preparation for the game was as a substitute, you do prepare a bit differently.”