Preston skipper Ian Ashbee relishing Morecambe trip

Ian Ashbee
Ashbee has made six appearances for Preston this season

Preston captain Ian Ashbee has said Tuesday's Johnstone's Paint Trophy tie at Morecambe is important for him as he continues to regain full match fitness.

The 35-year-old, who joined North End from Hull in January, missed the start of the season with a knee injury.

"The knee feels fine," he told BBC Radio Lancashire. "I've trained every day for a month and I'm raring to go.

"It's a game I think I'm starting in and I'll be trying my best to help us win to get into the next round."

The Birmingham-born midfielder captained Hull to their first ever promotion to the Premier League in 2008 under the current Preston boss Phil Brown.

The following season he suffered a career-threatening injury after rupturing his posterior cruciate ligament.

Despite wanting to now go on and claim a regular first team place at Deepdale, Ashbee says he understands it is necessary to bide his time.

"No player should be happy being on the bench but if that's what the manager wants you get on with it," he said.

"I understand that when people are playing well and we're winning football matches they stay in the team. Maybe a few years ago I would have spat my dummy out, but we're trying to create something here.

"There's a good mood round the club at the moment. Overall since the start of the season the mood and confidence has improved.

"I always try to tell my team-mates to keep an even keel. If you win don't get too excited and if you lose don't be too down because in this league the games come thick and fast."