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Hot-shot Joe has Wolves in sights

10 January 2014

By Tony Leighton

Preston North End striker Joe Garner will be aiming to extend his scoring streak and shoot the Lilywhites up to third in Sky Bet League 1 table with a victory at promotion rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday.

Former Carlisle United, Nottingham Forest and Watford player Garner is in his best run of form since joining Preston from the Hornets 12 months ago.

After hitting just one goal in his first 11 appearances this term- seven of them as substitute - Garner has bagged nine in his last nine to reach double figures and put himself well in the clear as North End's leading scorer for the campaign.

As he looked ahead to Saturday's visit to Wolves, currently in third place and two points ahead of Preston, the striker told "Getting a run of games in the starting line-up has been key to my goals coming along.

"I've always scored goals at this level and I've been in the team on a regular basis at a good time for us - we've had some very good results recently and hopefully we can get another one from a tough game against Wolves.

"They're a big club and Molineux is a difficult place to go, but it's a great ground to play at and with the run we're on at the moment we should be confident."

When Wolves visited Preston on the opening day of the season Garner had to watch from the subs' bench as the teams battled out a goalless draw.

"The two teams cancelled each other out at our place," he added, "but you could see that they were both strong sides who would almost certainly be up at the top end of the table as the season got going.

"It was a good point for both sides in that first match, but this time we can hopefully come away with all three points to take us above them in the table."

The omens for Saturday are looking good for Preston, who have lost only one of their last 16 League and Cup games - that defeat to top of the table Brentford - while Wolves have won only once in a seven-match sequence that has seen them slide from top spot to third having taken just six points from the 21 available.

Additionally, the Lilywhites are one of League 1's strongest away teams with eight wins and just one defeat coming from their 12 games on the road to date.

Only second in the table Leyton Orient have collected more points on their travels - and they have played two more away games than Preston.

The Lilywhites are lying fourth but have a game in hand on Wolves and are eight points clear of fifth-placed Peterborough United ahead of Saturday's fixtures.

Garner said: "The top four have stretched away a bit, but it will be a battle right to the end of the season. With the strength in our squad and the experienced players we've got though, we should be good enough to stay up there."

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