North End are frantically searching for opposition to play on their Italian tour after pulling the plug on one of their games.

One of the highlights of the week-long trip to northern Italy was to be a match against Serie A side Udinese.

But boss Billy Davies pulled the plug on that match when Udinese tried to change the venue for the game, which would have meant a three-and-a-half hour bus trip each way for North End.

They are now hoping to find another team to play on Friday, having played Austrian outfit Swarovski Wattens last night (Wednesday).

Davies said: "The game was supposed to take place halfway between the training camps but Udinese wanted to change that and get us to go across to them, which is well over three hours away, not allowing for traffic.

"We have 25 players out here so we are now looking at having a full-scale practice match among ourselves or trying to organise a game against a local Italian side similar to Bamber Bridge or Chorley."

Apart from the match setback, Davies has no complaints about the way pre-season training is going

For the first time in his North End career, defender Tyrone Mears is fully fit for a season's warm up.

In fact, only one player has yet to return to full training because of injury - keeper Andrew Lonergan.

The 22-year-old is confident he'll be back soon, too, praising roommate Eric Skora for keeping him upbeat. Like Lonergan, Skora has had to recover from a cruciate knee injury.

Lonergan said: "If I have any problems I know I can always talk to him, he's my room mate as well which has helped because he knows exactly how I'm feeling because he's been through it all too."

The games come thick and fast when they get back from Italy, with ties against Lancaster and Accrington Stanley on July 19, followed by an away trip to Bury - agreed when David Nugent moved from the Shakers to North End.

Two home games follow, against Wigan on July 27 and then Malaga on July 30.