Preston preview

Last updated : 24 April 2011 By Michael Morris

A Cardiff win in Lancashire coupled with a Crystal Palace victory in South London against Leeds would see Preston lose their status as a second tier club for the first time since promotion in 2000.

It doesn't bode well for the hosts after being spanked 4 - 0 at Millwall on Saturday evening. If they were able to beat Cardiff time is trunning out on their stint as a Championship club.

If Preston do have something on their side it's a fine record over the past 10 meetings at Deepdale. The 6 - 0 win in 2009 was an incredible result but also over recent visits we've been done 3 - 0 (twice), 4 - 0 and 5 - 0. City have won just once at Preston's impressive home and that was in 2007.

For Cardiff they must aim to get a better result than Norwich manage at home to Derby.

Norwich hold the advantage with three games to go. If they win all their games there's nothing we can do and it's the play offs. But even with just three games to go anything can happen.

City have experessed concerns today that Norwich have had a full three days break before Monday's match while City have only had one full 24 hour period of rest.

"We only have a day to recover which is a bit of scandal really because I think Norwich had four days," said Steve McPhail.

The announcement was made last October regarding the Ipswich v Norwich fixture so it's a bit late to be complaining about it now. The BBC are reporting that City travelled up to Lancashire on Vincent Tan's private jet. Allright for some, I drove up the M6 on Saturday night having to listen to 606 with Robbie Savage, but if he can lead Derby to a result against Norwich I'll happily vote for him to be best radio newcomer.

Dave Jones has a full squad bar David Marshall available. City were boosted by the return to the matchday 18 of Michael Chopra and Mark Hudson on Saturday.

Sean St Ledger (knee) and Leon Cort (hamstring) could return for Preston. Defender Bongani Khumalo has been ruled out after suffering a foot injury against Millwall. My colleagues at Preston-Mad paint a more depressing picture.

So just three games to go. Advantage Norwich, let's hope by 5pm on Monday Cardiff may have swung the balance in their favour.