Larger matchday squads and more subs are possibility for Preston North End

Bigger matchday squads and more substitutions could become a feature of Preston North End’s return to action later this month.

Wednesday, 3rd June 2020, 8:00 am

Discussions between the EFL and Championship clubs have included proposals to allow 20-man squads for games and the use of five subs.

Clubs are expected to vote on the changes next Monday, together with a number of other matters concerning the whole of the EFL.

North End are open to the idea of having nine substitutes on the bench and being able to use five of them.

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Preston midfielder Alan Browne is replaced by Paul Gallagher during a game this season

Until football’s suspension, sides could name seven subs and bring on three.

The proposed change is to take into consideration clubs having limited preparation time for the resumption.

More niggling injuries might be picked up, hence clubs wanting the option of spreading the workload among their squads.

Lilywhites advisor Peter Ridsdale told the Lancashire Post: “We will see what is proposed and take things from there.

“Having bigger squads for games and allowing more substitutions would require a vote of all clubs.

“There is a meeting next Monday when this matter and others will be discussed.

“Alex Neil and myself will speak about this, and I would have thought we’d be open to such a change if it was to help restrict injuries.

“There is a relatively short space of time to get ready for the games so that is why the changes about squad size and substitutions have been proposed.

“It is all part of the process of getting the season started again, something we are looking forward to.”

North End were able to resume contact training at Springfields yesterday after completing their risk assessment document for the EFL.

It was another step forward towards the resumption of the season on June 20.

It remains to be seen whether another layer of the build-up involves friendlies.

They looked to be off the agenda when the return-to-training proposals were first outlined.

However, Premier League clubs have reportedly been given the go-ahead to play friendlies but with strict guidelines.

A couple of bounce games would certainly do players no harm after such a long lay-off.

They would be ideal for managers too, in order to get tactical messages across.

Speaking recently, PNE boss Alex Neil said that not being able to play friendlies would be ‘unusual’.

He pointed out the fact that the lay-off since the season was suspended had been much longer than the normal summer break.