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Deepdale derby for latest warm-up

Clarets to step up pre-season preparations at old rivals Preston

24 July 2017

The Clarets face Football League opposition for the first time in pre-season tonight when they step up their preparations with a trip to take on old rivals Preston North End (kick-off 7.45 pm).

The trip to Deepdale will be Burnley’s first since a famous 1-0 derby win in April, 2016 as Sean Dyche’s men closed in on promotion back to the Premier League.

Joey Barton got the only goal with an early deflected free-kick in front of the Friday night television cameras.

His effort took Burnley back to the top of the Championship and set the stage for the promotion-clinching win against Queens Park Rangers at Turf Moor next up.

North End finished that season in 11th place – a position they replicated last season in what turned out to be Simon Grayson’s last campaign in charge.

The former Leeds, Huddersfield and Blackpool boss took charge at relegated Sunderland earlier this summer, meaning the Clarets will face a Preston side led by ex-Norwich City boss Alex Neil.

The Scot has overseen an unbeaten pre-season campaign so far, with wins over Bamber Bridge, Stockport County, Morecambe and Accrington and a 1-1 draw at home to Newcastle United last Saturday.

The Clarets closed in on promotion on their last Deepdale visit 

The Lilywhites complete their pre-season programme at Fleetwood Town on Friday night before their Championship curtain-raiser at home to Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, 5 August.

Neil is yet to make a new signing, with deals for the Cork City pair of Sean Maguire and Kevin O’Connor and the arrivals of Manchester United youngster Josh Harrop and Norwich City keeper Declan Rudd completed before his appointment.

The Clarets, meanwhile, have a week longer before the Premier League season kick-offs and, with three warm-up games still to go, manager Sean Dyche has the choice of utilising plenty of his senior players.

However, he will check on the fitness of Sam Vokes, who sat out last Saturday’s double-header with a minor ankle problem, and defenders James Tarkowski and Ben Mee, who both picked up knocks in the 3-2 win at Alfreton.

Supporters can pay on the night at Deepdale but must buy a ticket from the away ticket office, prices: Adults: £10, Senior Citizens: £5, Young adults: (19-21): £5, Students (Full time only) & 22-24 (proof must be provided): £5, Juniors (11-18 years): £5, Under 11 (0-10 years): £1.

Meanwhile, the Development Squad is also in action tonight with a trip to Evo-Stik Northern Premier League side Witton Albion (kick-off 7.30pm).

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