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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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League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Newcastle 38 24 6 8 78 38
2 Brighton 38 23 8 7 77 30
3 Huddersfield 37 22 5 10 71 4
4 Leeds Utd 38 21 6 11 69 16
5 Reading 38 20 7 11 67 2
6 Sheff Wed 38 18 8 12 62 9
7 Fulham 38 16 13 9 61 19
8 Norwich 38 16 9 13 57 9
9 Preston 38 15 12 11 57 6
10 Derby County 38 14 11 13 53 3
11 Barnsley 38 14 9 15 51 0
12 Aston Villa 38 13 12 13 51 0
13 Cardiff 38 14 9 15 51 -1
14 Brentford 38 14 8 16 50 3
15 Q.P.R. 38 14 8 16 50 -5
16 Wolves 37 12 9 16 45 -2
17 Ipswich 38 10 15 13 45 -9
18 Birmingham 38 11 12 15 45 -16
19 Bristol City 38 11 8 19 41 -3
20 Forest 38 11 8 19 41 -11
21 Burton 38 10 11 17 41 -14
22 Blackburn 38 9 13 16 40 -11
23 Wigan 38 8 10 20 34 -13
24 Rotherham 38 4 5 29 17 -54
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