Preston North End boss has decision to make as Daniel Johnson returns

Preston North End manager Ryan Lowe will make a late call on how to use Daniel Johnson for tomorrow’s visit to Hull after the midfielder’s return from international duty.

By Dave Seddon
Friday, 4th February 2022, 8:00 am

Johnson, 29, has spent the last couple of weeks playing for Jamaica.

He started two of the Reggae Boyz’s three World Cup qualifiers, with him an unused sub for the final game on Wednesday night.

In his absence, North End played three matches, beating West Bromwich Albion and drawing with Bristol City and Millwall.

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PNE midfielder Daniel Johnson celebrates after scoring for Jamaica against Mexico (photo: Getty Images)

Johnson will meet up with the PNE squad in their hotel later today after landing back from the Caribbean

Lowe told the Lancashire Post: “DJ will come back into the squad and I will decide what to do nearer the game.

“We like to build and prepare for a game, that started yesterday and will continue before we travel.

“The choices are he starts, he comes off the bench or he’s not in my plans.

“A player of DJ’s quality has to be in my plans, so I’ll be thinking about what to do.

“I also have a duty of care to the players who have been here and done fantastically well while DJ’s been away.

“DJ is an experienced lad and will have known to do the right things.

“You don’t fly in standard class coming back from international duty do you?

“I’m sure he’ll have had plenty of sleep and rested properly.

“He will be champing at the bit to get back into the team and get back to playing football for us.”

Lowe will add Johnson to the players who were on duty at Millwall on Tuesday night.

Tom Barkhuizen and Sean Maguire remain sidelined by injury.

North End will have a big following at the MKM Stadium tomorrow, with tickets sales around the 1,500 mark.

Fans can pay on the day at Hull, on a cash-only basis.

Lowe is delighted to have their backing for what will be a tricky encounter against a Hull side who have won their last three games.

They’ve changed manager recently, with Shota Arveladze replacing Grant McCann after a change of ownership.

Said Lowe: “If the fans are travelling with us, I want to show them the passion that I have got.

“When you are managing a football club, you have to be passionate.

“I know the fans have taken to that and it is nice they have.

“We are all in this as one, myself, the players, the staff and the fans, trying to bring the good times to Preston.

“The fans are certainly doing their bit because they are very noisy at the moment and I want that to continue.

“Hopefully we can have success down the line.”