PNE seek lift-off at Loftus Road

Callum Robinson could start for North End at QPR tomorrow
Callum Robinson could start for North End at QPR tomorrow
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PRESTON North End will make a fourth attempt to get off the mark in the Championship when they head to London tomorrow to face Queens Park Rangers.

The Lilywhites and local rivals Blackburn are the only two teams in the division yet to register a point and Simon Grayson is determined to get his side heading in the right direction as soon as possible.

He predicts a tight league this season and wants PNE to be competing further up it rather than in the lowly slot they currently occupy.

North End boss Grayson said: “It is such a competitive division and it is going to be close right the way through.

“I can’t see anyone running away with it and I can’t see teams getting cast adrift.

“We have to find a way of getting results, find some consistency and getting up the table as soon as possible.

“Our start has not been what we wanted and we’ve been frustrated with how things have gone.

“We could have had points on the board by now but a couple of things have not gone our way.

“The spirit is still good in the squad, no one is down or having a crisis of confidence.

“We will keep doing the right things, analysing what we are doing and hopefully those first points will come quickly.”

Paul Huntington’s fitness will be tested ahead of the trip to the capital, the centre-half having missed the defeat to Derby on Tuesday because of an abdominal strain.

Callum Robinson did his chances of another start tomorrow no harm with a lively performance against Derby on the left wing.

Grayson said: “Callum did ever so well in pre-season and affected the game when he came in the Fulham game.

“We started him in midweek and he more than justified getting that start.

“Callum is still young, still learning and has got that little bit of extra pace when he gets on the ball – he wants to take people on.

“He gives us that bit of quality, wants to get a shot off and test the keeper.”

PNE’s sale of Joe Garner to Rangers was on course to be finalised later today.

Garner travelled to Scotland yesterday for a medical and to talk personal terms.

North End gave the striker permission to talk to Rangers earlier in the week after agreeing a fee – Grayson is slightly bemused it is still to be completed at the Ibrox end.

“It is between Rangers, his representatives and Joe to get it all done,” said Grayson.

“Usually when you want to sign a player, you do it as quickly as you can.

“The money we will get for Joe will help with a general strengthening of the squad.

“It will help with the pursuit of a right-back, maybe a wide player and a striker.

“As I said earlier in the week, we are also looking to extend a few contracts.

“Five or six players have had offers through their representatives over the last few days and hopefully we’ll get some good news on those.”