Preston to wait on fitness updates for trio who came off against QPR
The international break might just have come at the right time for Preston North End as they assess their casualties from the weekend defeat at Queens Park Rangers.
It was not just hurt pride as the Lilywhites’ nine-match unbeaten run ended.
Ali McCann, Patrick Bauer and Sean Maguire came off with injuries, new boy McCann’s looking the most serious of the three at this early stage.
The midfielder was hurt in a block tackle with QPR front man Andre Gray during the first half.
McCann tried to carry on for a couple of minutes before time was called on his afternoon’s work.
Centre-half Bauer didn’t appear for the second half because of a dead leg.
Maguire had the back of his leg stood on in a challenge which caused him pain in his hamstring. Having set up both PNE goals in the 3-2 defeat, the Irishman going off was costly as his side sought a way back into the game.
North End don’t play again until a week on Saturday when they host Derby at Deepdale.
North End head coach Frankie McAvoy said: “It was a block on Ali’s ankle, a really sore one and he was too sore to continue.
“He will be assessed and worked on by the physio and we’ll see where it goes.
“Pat’a dead leg was a deep one. He’d carried on with it in the first half but once he stopped at half-time, it became difficult to get going.
“With Sean, I didn’t see the stamp but apparently his leg was stamped on.
“His hamstring has a bit of a tweak in it, that is why we had to change him.
“It was a shame because I thought Sean was excellent.
“The front two were a real nuisance for most of the game with DJ in behind them.”
McAvoy chose to replace Maguire with Brad Potts, putting the midfielder up front with Riis despite having Josh Murphy and Scott Sinclair on the bench.
It was a decision which didn’t go down well with the North End supporters.
Said McAvoy: “I put Pottsy in to keep the ball alive. He’s done well for us and I wanted him to compete up there.
“I think I made a mistake in the Stoke City game last week, leaving Emil Riis up front and no presence next to him to keep things alive.
“That is why I went for Pottsy this time. That wasn’t the reason we lost the game when we came on a 2-2.
“The reason we lost the game was that we didn’t defend well enough.”
The defeat, PNE’s first in the league since August 17, left them in 18th place – they are one of four teams on 11 points.
North End’s reserves are in action against Carlisle in the Central League Cup at Euxton tomorrow afternoon (2pm).
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