Sean Maguire believes he's getting very close to his best after turning in another impressive display for Preston North End in the stalemate with Derby County on Friday night.

The Kilkenny striker has been frustrated by recurring hamstring problems that have plagued him since moving to the Lilywhites from Cork City in the summer of 2017.

He made his latest comeback at the start of the month, coming off the bench in the FA Cup clash with Doncaster. That was the 24-year-old's first taste of action since limping out of the Republic of Ireland's friendly with Northern Ireland back in November.

Now, he's back to full fitness, and with the Euro 2020 qualification campaign only a month away, Maguire is keen to tune up quickly.

"I’m not too pushed at the moment if I’m not scoring goals, I think that will come the more match fit I get," he told the club website.

"I think I’m still a couple games [away from being] back to where I was last season; that will come with more minutes. I think it was only my second 90 minutes of the season [against Derby] and, strangely enough, it was my first start at Deepdale this season."

This will be a huge spring for Maguire. Preston are ten points off the play-off spots and aiming to mount a late push for the top six, while Mick McCarthy is plotting qualification for the Euros in his second spell in charge of Ireland. Maguire will likely be central to both drives.

"We have eight days now towards our next game which is a massive game obviously, Bolton away and we have three games in a week and that can tell our season in the space of those three games," he said.

"You know every game in the Championship is going to be tough and I felt that Derby are supposed to be one of the better teams in the Championship and we made them look mediocre."