The Big Match Preview: Barnsley (H)
Pride Park Stadium
Following the two impressive victories over Nottingham Forest and Millwall, confidence is high and fans are hoping that, finally, it could again be their year.
Without producing sensational football, The Rams are ticking over nicely and getting the all-important points on the board at the start of the season.
Whether Nigel Clough´s young side will be able to maintain their current form for the rest of the season remains to be seen, but the early signs are good and the effort is commendable.
Next up are Barnsley, a side doing reasonably well under Keith Hill. Although the season is still in its infancy, it doesn´t look like Barnsley will be embroiled in another relegation battle this season.
Birthday boy, Jason Shackell, will not be taking his former side lightly: 'I think there is always an added incentive when you play against your old club, and I am looking forward to it,' said Shackell, who is 28 today.
'I know a lot of the Barnsley players and I know what they are capable of. I know it will be a tough game,' he added.
'They are very solid, they have got a lot of experienced players and they have got some ability. They are going to be a threat and I know they work hard as well.'
The Rams Team News:
Frank Fielding will return to the Derby line-up following the suspension which saw him sit out the win over Millwall. Number two, Adam Legzdins, did very well in his stead, and should Fielding ever develop an injury or loss of form, it´s good to know that there is a more than capable back-up.
Nathan Tyson will miss out with his troublesome groin, but is expected to be fit for the first game after the upcoming international break.
Jamie Ward will be fine to play despite being bandaged up in the later stages on Saturday after catching an accidental blow to the eye.
Player to watch: Jamie Ward
Pacy frontman, Ward, has become a fan´s favourite since signing for The Rams from Sheffield United.
He was dangerous in the win over Millwall and produced a sublime pass to set up Steve Davies for his fourth goal of the season.
Despite not playing in his preferred central role, he gives his all for the team and always demonstrates quality and skill.
The Tykes Team News:
Miles Addison cannot face his parent club as a part of the loan agreement between the two clubs.
Player to watch: Jacob Butterfield
Midfielder, Butterfield, has started the new season in good form and scored with a 30-yard shot at the weekend.
His manager Keith Hill is keen for him to sign a new deal at the club, and, at 21, he could be a player to watch for many years to come.
Match Facts & Stats
Derby County last 5:
Nottingham Forest (a) 1-2
Coventry City (a) 0-2
Burnley (h) 1-2
Doncaster Rovers (h) 3-0
Blackpool (a) 1-0
Barnsley last 5:
Birmingham City (a) 1-1
Watford (h) 1-1
Leicester City (h) 1-1
Millwall (a) 0-0
Reading (a) 2-1
Leicester City vs. Derby County, Sat 1st October, 17:20pm, The Championship