Rams v Villa - Preview
Rams v Villa - Preview
Time is running out for Paul Jewell`s side, and they need a victory against Aston Villa on Saturday to start the momentum and reach Sunderland`s lowest points total in the Premier League.
The Rams sit on 11 points and need another five to overhaul the target but with the Rams already on a Premier League record run of 27 matches without victory it doesn`t look good.
Also the Rams are in danger of becoming only the second club ever in history to go through a full league season with just one win. But Jewell hopes they can end the season on a high.
"It would be lovely to give the supporters something to end the season on a high.
'We all want that, but I would rather reward them next season, that's the most important thing.
'While we have five games left as much as we'd like the season to be over we want to try and get some points on the board and get past that magical 15 points," said Jewell.
In Rams team news Australian midfielder Mile Sterjovski is almost definitely ruled out with an Achilles injury, while midfielder Robbie Savage, defender Dean Leacock and striker Tito Villa are all facing late fitness tests but are expected to be passed fit.
Alan Stubbs is close to a recall and Tyrone Mears is hoping for a recall to the starting line up.
Villa is still chasing a European spot and boss Martin O`Neill is wary of the Pride Park side.
'Derby has shown that they won't just roll over.
'If we can get into a bit of free flowing football or at least earn the right to that then we might get some luck.
'Derby want to avoid finishing with the lowest ever Premier League points tally and they'll set their own targets now. The way they have played in recent weeks suggest they are giving everything.'
Villa striker John Carew is doubtful, having suffered a recurrence of a groin injury during the 4-0 win over Bolton last weekend, and Midfielder Craig Gardner is still ruled out with a thigh injury.
Derby County (from): Carroll, Moore, Leacock, McEveley, Stubbs, Sterjovski, Savage, Ghaly, Lewis, Miller, Villa, Earnshaw, Todd, Jones, Robert, Price.
Aston Villa (from): Carson, Taylor, Mellberg, Laursen, Knight, Bouma, Petrov, Reo-Coker, Barry, Young, Berger, Osbourne, Maloney, Agbonlahor, Carew, Harewood, Salifou, Routledge.
Referee - Keith Stroud (Hampshire)