Preston right-back Darnell Fisher close to a return to action

Darnell Fisher is closing-in on a return to the Preston North End squad after four weeks out with a hip injury.

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Darnell Fisher

Darnell Fisher

PNE boss Alex Neil says the right-back is ‘not far off at all’ and his return would be a timely one with Calum Woods injuring his hamstring in the 5-1 victory at Wycombe Wanderers.

Fisher damaged his hip in the first-half of the win over Sheffield United last month.

Woods and Tom Clarke have filled the vacancy in his absence.

Neil said: “Darnell is not far off at all, he is making good progress.

Darnell Fisher was injured against Sheffield United in December

Darnell Fisher was injured against Sheffield United in December

“When he first did it, the problem we had was that it is the sort of injury which is hard to put a time line on in terms of recovery.

“He has made good progress to this point, he’s not ready at the moment but he should not be too far off.”

Fisher has caught the eye since his summer switch from Rotherham.

Neil likes what he offers on the right hand side.

“Darnell is very solid, he is a natural right-back,” said Neil.

“Tom Clarke has come in and played at right-back no problem but his predominant position is as a centre-back.

“They are two different right-backs and it is nice to have flexibility.”

Giving an update on Woods’ injury, Neil said: “We don’t think it is as bad as first feared.

“It is a grade one hamstring injury which means between two and three weeks.”

Elsewhere on the injury front, new boy Louis Moult won’t be ready for the trip to Millwall on Saturday but next week’s Deepdale clash with Birmingham is likely to see him make his debut.

The striker strained his hamstring last month playing for former club Motherwell.

Neil said: “Louis did part of the session on Tuesday.

“He is not far away, this weekend might be too early because he hasn’t done a lot since the start of December.

“But I think next week he will be in full training which is great.”