Preston North End boss Alex Neil keeping cards close to his chest on selection ahead of facing 'frightening' Manchester City at Deepdale

Preston manager Alex Neil applauds the North End fans at Birmingham
Preston manager Alex Neil applauds the North End fans at Birmingham

Preston North End manager Alex Neil is giving little away about how he plans to tackle Manchester City in Tuesday night's Carabao Cup clash at Deepdale.

At his press conference at Springfields on Monday morning, Neil kept his cards close to his chest over selection for the third round tie.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola with City goalkeeper Ederson during Saturday's 8-0 win over Watford

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola with City goalkeeper Ederson during Saturday's 8-0 win over Watford

Ben Pearson's fitness will be checked after he got cramp in the closing stages of the 1-0 win at Birmingham City on Saturday.

The midfielder had missed the previous game with a virus and only had limited training time ahead of Birmingham.

Billy Bodin was ruled out of Saturday's victory with a calf strain and could be struggling to face City.

Neil said: "I'm not going to give anything away as to what my line-up will be.

PNE midfielder Ben Pearson and manager Alex Neil - Pearson's fitness will be tested ahead of the Manchester City game

PNE midfielder Ben Pearson and manager Alex Neil - Pearson's fitness will be tested ahead of the Manchester City game

"As with all games I will look at what is the best team to try and get us a result if we can.

"I know we have another three games in a week after this, which is something I'm conscious of."

With regards Bodin's injury, Neil said: "Unfortunately for Bill at the start of the last session before Saturday he just hurt the bottom of his calf a little bit.

"It's nothing major but he couldn't play at Birmingham.

"We will have a look at everyone, Saturday's game was an exhausting one in the heat."

Neil says few people will be expecting North End to beat City, a line of thinking which could help take the heat off his players.

He knows the huge task awaiting them, City hitting top note on Saturday when they hammered Watford 8-0 in the Premier League.

"I don't think there is any pressure on us going into the game," said Neil.

"That is because Manchester City are arguably one of the best teams in the world at the moment, if not the best.

"They have spent hundreds of millions on their infrastructure and player.

"I've watched their game from the weekend and it was 8-0 going on 15-0, they really were that dominant.

"They are a frightening proposition when they are right at it."