Preston manager Phil Brown will hope to have strikers Iain Hume and Chris Brown available for the home clash with rivals Burnley.

Both men have been sidelined with hamstring and knee injuries respectively in recent weeks but are edging closer to full fitness and may come into contention to face the Clarets.

Yet Deepdale boss Brown admits competition for places is increasing after two improved performances saw his side hold high-flying QPR and Nottingham Forest to draws in the past week.

He said: "It's going to be difficult to pick a team but that is my job. Now we are a team and I believe that we will cause more teams more problems."

Brown has yet to taste victory since taking charge at Deepdale last month.

Burnley boss Eddie Howe is boosted by the availability of Charlie Austin and Marvin Bartley.

The January signings were cup-tied for Monday's 5-1 FA Cup fifth-round thumping against West Ham at Upton Park but will come back into contention to face the Lilywhites.

Clarets striker Martin Paterson could be out for the rest of the season with a thigh injury and midfielder Chris McCann also remains sidelined.

Despite the disappointment of exiting the FA Cup, Howe is confident his men can quickly refocus their sights on the battle for promotion.

He said: "We've had a good little run in the FA Cup and now our focus has to turn to the league."

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Topics:
Chris Brown
Football
Charlie Austin
Chris Brown
Iain Hume
FA Cup
Chris McCann
Eddie Howe
Marvin Bartley
Martin Paterson