Manager-less Preston host AFC Bournemouth at Deepdale on Saturday.
Graham Westley departed Preston this week after a poor record in charge of the Lillywhites.
Westley’s former assistant John Dreyer has taken over first team affairs on a temporary basis.
The Cherries might make the trip having been knocked off the top of the table, Tranmere host Shrewsbury on Friday night with a win enough to leapfrog the Cherries by a single point.
Howe told afcb.co.uk…
‘…Going to a place like Preston is always tough and when you are at the top, there is extra pressure. I have said to the players, let`s relish that pressure…’
‘…There are some big clubs in this league and Preston are one of them. Their perception of us could be different, but we will go there and do our business and that is a key point at this stage of the season.
“This game comes in a tough period and at the moment we are coming through it ok, but we can`t rest on our laurels and we have to be totally focussed on the task ahead.”
Preston Team News:
Jack King, Stuart Beavon and Joel Byrom all missed out on Westley’s final game in charge of Preston.
While Ben Davies and Chris Beardsley both suffered injuries during the game which will force them to miss out.
Preston captain John Mousinho has returned to training but is unlikely to feature, while defender Bailey Wright returns from suspension.
Player to watch: Stuart Beavon
Stuart Beavon was once a target for AFC Bournemouth during the strikers time with Wycombe.
Last season he scored 25 goals for Wycombe in 45 appearances, he began this season at Wycombe, scoring once before he made the move to Preston.
Since moving north he has scored eight goals in twenty eight appearances.
If fit, he could prove to be Preston’s danger man.
AFC Bournemouth Team News:
AFC Bournemouth winger Marc Pugh missed the victory at Crewe due to an illness. He has rejoined training, but will undergo a late fitness test.
Cherries stand-in captain Tommy Elphick is likely to still be out after going to see a second specialist regarding the injury he sustained at stadium:MK.
New signing Ryan Fraser could be set to make his debut following a January transfer window move from Scottish Premier League side Aberdeen. Fraser was an unused substitute against Crewe.
Miles Addison, Darryl Flahavan, Stephen Purches and Charlie Sheringham all remain on the sidelines.
Player to watch: Brett Pitman
AFC Bournemouth striker Brett Pitman scored his ninth goal in twelve League One appearances against Crewe mid-week.
Match Facts & Stats
Head to Head
Bournemouth wins – 13
Preston North End wins – 8
Draws – 5
Last time out
Back in August Paul Groves AFC Bournemouth drew 1-1 with Preston.
On the last visit to Deepdale, Lee Bradbury’s AFC Bournemouth picked up an impressive 3-1 victory.
23rd February 2013, AFC Bournemouth Vs Sheffield United, 3pm.