Preston North End midfielder Ryan Ledson in contention to start against Huddersfield Town

Preston North End’s midfield is ready to get an enforced revamp for the clash with Huddersfield Town at Deepdale tomorrow.

By Dave Seddon
Friday, 8th November 2019, 6:00 am
Preston midfielder Ryan Ledson could start against Huddersfield at Deepdale on Saturday
Preston midfielder Ryan Ledson could start against Huddersfield at Deepdale on Saturday

Definitely sidelined is Ben Pearson who sits this one out due to suspension.

North End manager Alex Neil will then check on the fitness of Daniel Johnson who injured his foot at Charlton last Sunday.

Ryan Ledson is the natural replacement for Pearson in the holding midfield role.

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Paul Gallagher scores Preston's winner at Charlton

If Johnson doesn’t make it, Paul Gallagher would step in as he did against Charlton.

Gallagher, 35, came off the bench at The Valley and went on to score PNE’s winner from the penalty spot.

Neil said: “When players are out it is an opportunity for someone else.

“Midfield is a strong area for us, we have got guys who are desperate to play.

Preston midfielder Daniel Johnson hurt his foot against Charlton and is a doubt for the Huddersfield game

“When DJ had to come off at Charlton, we tweaked it a bit because DJ was playing higher and Gally plays deeper.

“With Gally playing deep, you need your full-backs to be more aggressive.

“That is a change which the players made easily, they are very adaptable and know what is wanted from them.”

Pearson’s ban is for five bookings and if it is Ledson who comes in, it will be a rare league appearance for the 22-year-old this season.

Ledson has started only one Championship game, the 2-0 victory over Brentford when Pearson was ill.

He also came on as a sub at Nottingham Forest at the end of August.

The Liverpudlian did start all three Carabao Cup games against Bradford, Hull City and Manchester City.

Johnson trapped a nerve in his foot when he was fouled by Charlton’s Naby Sarr in the first half.

Huddersfield have a key midfielder player missing too, Jonathan Hogg sitting this one due to suspension.

Like Pearson, he got a fifth yellow card last week.

Whoever gets their chance tomorrow, Neil has plenty of confidence in his squad.

Players have come into the side this season and done well, having seemingly been out of the picture.

“Josh Harrop wasn’t in the squad to start with but came in to score four or five goals,” said Neil.

“Jayden Stockley wasn’t playing regularly and found himself out of the squad one week. In the last two games he has been key for us.

“Joe Rafferty is another one, there are examples all over the pitch.

“David Nugent and Louis Moult came into the team, Alan Browne is another one.

“Alan wasn’t always in the team earlier in the season but he’s been key for us recently.

“It’s a squad game here, it is not just about 11 players. We keep everyone involved here and they have a part to play.”