Preston v Wigan - Friday 19:45, Sky Sports 1
Getting hammered 5-0 is never easy to swallow, especially not in a game where you match the opposition on balance for 70 minutes, but Preston's late horror show at Brentford last weekend has the potential to be a turning point in their season. Gone now is the illusion that everything's under control, that results will turn if they keep doing what they're doing.
Instead, complacency has been replaced by shame and embarrassment. Either North End atone or they risk severe damage to confidence. The 3-2 come-from-behind EFL Cup success at Bournemouth in midweek suggests they are prepared to roll their sleeves up. Simon Grayson rotated and those who came in were determined to seize the opportunity given to them.
Nobody more so than Simon Makienok. The towering Danish striker bagged his first senior hat-trick on the south coast and surely keeps his place here. With both teams displaying so many imperfections, the match betting is a minefield but the former Charlton man looks a decent price to follow-up his Dean Court heroics in the first goalscorer market at 7/1.
Gary Caldwell reckons Wigan are among the best in the division for creativity but is now placing greater emphasis on what they do without the ball. Last weekend's 0-0 at home to Fulham was considered a step in the right direction but Makienok has attributes no team can handle when deployed correctly. He's not a prolific goalscorer but, here, he might just be the difference.