THE BIG KICK-OFF: Preston North End v Bristol City

Preston North End take on Bristol City at Deepdale on Saturday (3pm).

By Dave Seddon
Saturday, 29th January 2022, 8:00 am

Here we turn the focus on the opposition boss and the man in the middle, ref John Busby.

THE GAFFER: Nigel Pearson

The experienced Nigel Pearson will bring his Bristol City side to Deepdale on Saturday.

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Robins' manager Nigel Pearson

The Robins are the eighth club he has managed on a permanent basis, with Carlisle, Southampton, Leicester (twice), Hull City, Derby, OH Leuven and Watford the others.

He’s also been caretaker manager at Newcastle and Sheffield Wednesday. Pearson, 58, was appointed City boss 11 months ago, succeeding Dean Holden.

His 44 games in charge have brought 11 wins, 10 draws and 23 defeats.

THE REFEREE: John Busby

The Oxfordshire referee will have the whistle at Deepdale tomorrow.

It is the first time that Mr Busby has taken charge of a North End game in his five seasons on the list.

In November, he was in the middle for Bristol City’s 1-1 draw with Blackburn.

This season he has refereed 22 matches, showing 87 yellow cards and four red.

His last Championship game was on January 3 when he took charge of Reading’s 2-2 draw with Derby.