Preview: Derby County vs. Scunthorpe United
Pride Park Stadium
Something has to give in the weeken fixture involving The Rams and Scunthorpe United. Nigel Clough´s Derby side have produced five wins on the spin on home soil whilst The Iron, under the stewardship of Ian Baraclough, have notched maximum points in the last three away games. Both sides clearly have reason to be confident, but Derby will be especially keen to exorcise the demons of the humiliating 1-4 home defeat last season, which is viewed by many as the turning point in The Rams´fortunes. Nigel Clough laid into the side after that game, and a win tomorrow against a Scunny side will be sure to ease the pain of the result around a year ago.
Rams manager Nigel Clough says that his side need to be on-top of their game if they are to beat opposition in this league, as the away defeats against Millwall and Leicester have shown: 'We have to be 100% on our game and the majority of the players have to be,' said the manager.
'One of the things that has stood out in recent weeks is that we have not had a bad player in a lot of the games. Everybody did their job, everybody contributed.
'At Leicester, I would say we had at least four or five players not quite firing on all cylinders.
'It was difficult to say who did play well, not too many.
'But let's get over it, let's get back to how good we have been and concentrate on all the positives of the last couple of months.'
Despite Scunthorpe´s recent excellent away record, they have struggled for form at home and Martyn Woolford wants to see his side become more consistent: 'I really can't put my finger on why we are struggling at home,' the versatile midfielder confessed.
'There is no difference in attitude in the dressing room before a game.
'It is so frustrating because our away results show we are not a bad team.
'And I think once we can put two or three good results together at home, then everything will begin to fall into place again.
'I'm expecting another tough game at Derby but we can take confidence from the fact we won there 4-1 last season and I am sure that is something that might be at the back of their minds.'
The Rams Team News:
Shaun Barker is suspended for the match having picked up his fifth booking of the season in the defeat at Leicester City. Alberto Bueno faces a late fitness test to see whether he will feature.
Player to watch: Alberto Bueno?
Should Spanish striker Bueno return to the Derby side, it would be a huge boost and increase the chances of another home win. His three goals this season have all come at Pride Park.
The Iron Team News:
Left-back Eddie Nolan, midfielder Sam Togwell and derender Michael Raynes are all rated 50/50 to make the squad to face The Rams. Garry Thompson, who scored twice in the 4-1 mauling last season, will not be ready to play.
Player to watch: Martyn Woolford
Woolford has nothed six goals this season, including four in the league. He netted the winning goal for his side when The Rams were on the wrong end of a 3-2 scorline at Glanford Park early last season.
Match Facts & Stats
Millwall (a) 0-2
Watford (h) 4-1
Portsmouth (h) 2-0
Ipswich Town (a) 2-0
Leicester City (a) 0-2
Watford (a) 2-0
Leeds United (h) 1-4
Hull City (a) 1-0
Middlesbrough (h) 0-2
Cardiff City (h) 2-4
Burnley vs. Derby County, Sat 27th November, 17:20pm, The Championship