haven’t done themselves justice on recent visits to Deepdale, according to captain Darragh Lenihan, who feels his side are in a better place to end their poor run of results against their neighbours.

Rovers haven’t beaten North End since Paul Lambert’s first game in charge, some five years ago, with no win in their last meetings with the Deepdale side.

Their last two visits have seen them lose 3-2 and 4-1, and Lenihan says it’s time for that run to change.

He said: “We haven’t done ourselves justice against Preston away from home in the last couple of years. I feel that we’re in a better place.

“I missed the game last year and the year before we lost 4-1.

“But I think with the squad we’ve got now we’re in a better position now to hopefully go there and get three points.”

Rovers would overtake North End with a win, and asked for his assessment of the season with 12 games gone, Lenihan said: “A little bit up and down, certain games we’ve played really well and others we’ve probably not played as well.

“It’s been difficult in terms of injuries and Covid, we’ve not had everyone to choose from. I know the Championship is relentless and more often than not you won’t have a full squad, but I feel we’ve been a little bit unlucky with things.”

The game could pit Lenihan up against close friend, and Irish team-mate Seani Maguire.

It was Jayden Stockley who roughed up the Rovers backline last season, when Lenihan was out injured, with Maguire and summer signing Emil Riis Jakobsen also vying to start up front for Alex Neil’s side.

Rovers will be confident of posing problems to Preston with their front three, but Lenihan is also aware of the hosts’ threat.

“Seani is a good friend of mine, he played last year at Ewood and marking him was weird, playing up against one of your close friends,” he explained.

“But for those 90 minutes you’re not friends, and he would say the same thing, I’ll just have my Blackburn head on.

“I’m not sure whether he’ll play but he’s a good player, makes good runs in behind, a good finisher and is clever around the box.
“They have a lot of options up front you have to be respectful of, Stockley, Jakobsen and Seani so defensively it’s going to be a tough game but something that we’re looking forward to.”