Kem Izzet and Tom Eastman could overcome midweek injuries to retain their places in Colchester’s starting line-up.
Izzet has had treatment on an ankle injury and will be fighting to make his 400th appearance for the U’s.
Defender Eastman is more likely to start having had stitches in his head after a clash against Oldham.
Winger Ashley Vincent is also back in contention as he continues his return from a hamstring injury that has kept him out for nearly two months.
Manager John Ward has no new injury worries to contend with.
Should Izzet and Eastman prove their fitness, Ward is likely to name an unchanged side from their 1-1 draw against Latics.
Preston boss Graham Westley is set to have his attacking options boosted.
Jamie Proctor played and scored in Tuesday’s reserve victory over a Manchester City side featuring Carlos Tevez and is pushing for inclusion after recovering from a groin problem.
Canadian forward Iain Hume played the last 25 minutes of Saturday’s goalless draw with Walsall, his first action since suffering a hamstring injury against Sheffield Wednesday on New Year’s Eve.
Last weekend’s game against the Saddlers was overshadowed by North End midfielder Adam Barton suffering a horrific dislocated ankle and broken leg, and the 21-year-old is starting on the long road back to fitness having undergone surgery this week.
Danny Mayor could replace Barton in the short term after recovering from a muscle strain, but defender David Gray (hamstring) and striker Neil Mellor (knee) remain out.