We’re into the final third of the 2022/23 Championship season and the play-off race is still as exciting as ever. Just nine points separate sixth-placed Luton Town and Reading down in 14th, with both Coventry and Preston included in that group.
Visitors Coventry are certainly in the better position, just five points behind Luton, at the last of an even closer group thanks to their recent good form. The Sky Blues go into this game on a four-game unbeaten run with three consecutive victories.
Bouncing back from a 1-0 defeat to West Brom at the start of February, Coventry first drew with Luton despite conceding in the opening minute and going down to ten men late on. But the suspension didn’t hamper Coventry too much, with three wins over Millwall, Rotherham and Sunderland following – two of whom are fighting alongside the Sky Blues for a play-off spot.
One place but three points behind Coventry are Preston, who will be hoping to have turned the corner after a poor run of form. Preston started the season as one of the most boring sides, hardly conceding but also barely scoring, so they were playing catch up on the promotion hopefuls.
Preston returned from the World Cup with six defeats from their first nine Championship matches, including a 2-1 home loss to then bottom-of-the-league Huddersfield Town on Boxing Day. But they are now unbeaten in three, starting the run with consecutive draws against Luton and Hull before returning to winning ways against Wigan.
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Preston vs Coventry match stats
Preston may have been struggling for goals earlier in the season but their matches certainly weren’t without cards. Ryan Lowe’s men are one of the dirtiest sides in the Championship this season, with only Swansea (79) being shown more cards than Preston’s 77 (74 yellows and three reds).
Integral to Coventry’s win over Sunderland at the weekend was Viktor Gyokeres, who scored and assisted in the 2-1 victory. Dubbed the Erling Haaland of the Championship by Coventry manager Tony Mowbray, Gyokeres has scored 15 goals so far this season with only Chuba Akpom (19) managing more.