Andrew Hughes relishing battle with Josh Earl to be Alex Neil's first choice as Preston North End left back

Andrew Hughes is relishing his battle to be Preston North End's left back with Josh Earl.

Thursday, 20th December 2018, 3:02 pm
Updated Thursday, 20th December 2018, 4:08 pm
Andrew Hughes and Josh Earl have been battling it out at left back

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Since his summer arrival from Peterborough Hughes has made 17 appearances in all competitions, while Earl has made nine after a breakthrough first campaign as a professional last season.

“I got injured in training and Josh came in and then as you saw I struggled to get my place back,” said Hughes, set to start at Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday.

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Andrew Hughes and Josh Earl have been battling it out at left back

“Then Josh got injured and I was back in.

“That’s the way it’s gone for us a bit and you just never know what’s going to happen.

“I’ve got to try and stay fit now and we’ll see what happens. It’s good competition between us.

“Josh is only young but you can see what a good player he is.

“He’s played a number of Championship games and his form meant I was sat on the bench for a number of games.

“But that’s the way it goes. I couldn’t get angry about it.”

With Earl nursing a thigh problem it is Hughes who will line up on the left-hand side of the defence at Hillsborough this weekend.

PNE are on the up and will be looking to exploit a home side who have lost seven of their last 10 games, with supporters calling for manager Jos Luhakay to be sacked.

“They aren’t on the best of runs at the moment,” said Hughes.

“We go there full of confidence and looking to bring back three points.

“But everyone knows anyone can beat anyone in this league.

“Before the season, you’re looking at Sheffield Wednesday and thinking they will be up there.

“But as it goes they aren’t on a good run and we are.

“Going off current form, we should back ourselves to go there and get a good result.

“At a big club like that the expectations of the fans are sky high.

“If we can nick an early goal there and get the crowd turning on them then we’re in for a good day.”