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Preview: Derby County vs. Birmingham City

The Rams
vs.
The Blues

Pride Park Stadium

31/07/10

15:00

The Rams' pre-season schedule ends with a match against Premier League Birmingham City. The Blues have enjoyed a good start to their own pre-season with three consecutive wins over Asian opposition and Derby will be pleased at going undefeated thus far, with an impressive goals tally and a win over top-flight side Stoke City.

Vital Quotes:

Nigel Clough sees the game against The Blues as an excellent chance to further test themselves against high quality opponents: 'Birmingham had a great season last year, they have great quality will certainly give us another worthwhile workout.

'We've been happy with how our pre-season has panned out and each game has seen a gradual step-up in the opposition.

'Birmingham will certainly be another test for us.'

Rams striker Kris Commons also made reference to the class Birmingham possess: 'Birmingham are a quality side, we saw that in the FA Cup last season and it will be a good test for us before the preparations step up next week to build up to Leeds.'

Nigel Clough's opposite number Alex McLeish hinted that the pre-season clash will not determine his side for the coming season: 'Fans should not read anything into the actual team that I pick for any game. The team against Derby, for example, is not likely to be the XI that I start the season with.'

The Rams Team News:

Rob Hulse and Robbie Savage are both likely to feature in the game having sat out the Stoke friendly with groin strains. There are no other fresh injuries for Nigel Clough to deal with although the news that Shaun Barker is set to miss the season-opener with Leeds in unwelcome.

Player to watch: Kris Commons

As always, Commons has shown his undoubted quality in pre-season with numerous goals and assists. We all must pray that he remains injury-free this season. It could well be the difference between top and bottom half positions.

The Blues Team News:

N/A

Player to watch: Nicola Zigic

Giant Serbian Zigic signed for The Blues from Valencia in the summer with a big reputations and a huge physical presence. He will present an even greater aerial threat than Stoke's tall forward line.

Match Facts & Stats

Pre Season results (first team):

Burton Albion (a) 1-0

Southend United (a) 1-1

Bournemouth (a) 3-3

Chesterfield (a) 5-4

Stoke City (h) 1-0

Next Fixtures:

Leeds United vs. Derby County, Sat 7th August, 3pm, The Championship


Writer:RobB
Date:Friday July 30 2010
Time: 6:42PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
P Brighton 44 28 8 8 92 35
P Newcastle 44 27 7 10 88 40
3 Huddersfield 44 25 6 13 81 3
4 Reading 44 24 7 13 79 1
5 Sheff Wed 44 23 9 12 78 15
6 Fulham 44 21 13 10 76 27
7 Leeds Utd 44 22 7 15 73 14
8 Norwich 44 19 9 16 66 12
9 Brentford 44 18 9 17 63 12
10 Derby County 44 17 12 15 63 2
11 Preston 44 16 13 15 61 2
12 Aston Villa 44 16 13 15 61 0
13 Cardiff 44 16 11 17 59 -2
14 Barnsley 44 15 12 17 57 0
15 Wolves 44 15 10 19 55 -3
16 Ipswich 44 13 16 15 55 -6
17 Bristol City 44 14 9 21 51 -6
18 Burton 44 13 12 19 51 -12
19 Q.P.R. 44 14 8 22 50 -12
20 Forest 44 13 9 22 48 -11
21 Birmingham 44 11 14 19 47 -22
22 Blackburn 44 10 15 19 45 -15
23 Wigan 44 10 11 23 41 -16
R Rotherham 44 5 6 33 21 -58
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