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The Big Match Preview: Middlesbrough (A)

Boro
vs.
The Rams

Riverside Stadium

22/10/2011

15:00

The Rams face the latest in a tough run of matches with a trip to an unhappy hunting ground: Middlesbrough.

Points at The Riverside Stadium have been hard to come by for The Rams in recent years but now may be a good time to play Boro, who have scored only once in the last five games, slipping five points away from leaders Southampton.

Derby also sit on 21 points and will be confident of taking something of one of their early play-off rivals given the impressive number of points Nigel Clough's men have accumulated on the road this season.

Vital Quotes:

Nigel Clough is considering handing young starlet Mason Bennet his debut against Boro...because he has the school holidays coming up: 'Mason is someone we have to be patient with, but we can`t deny that we`re very excited about him,' he said.

'He's a fantastic prospect and playing in the Championship would certainly not faze him.

'We wanted to take him with us to Reading, but we were mindful that he had to be in at school nice and early the following day!

'It won't be a problem this weekend though, because he's breaking up for half-term next week.'

Boro Team News:

Influential former Celtic midfielder Barry Robson is suspended for the match after picking up his fifth booking of the season against Nottingham Forest.

Rhys Williams (groin), Matthew Bates (foot), Kevin Thomson (hamstring) and goalkeeper Carl Ikeme (hand) are also doubts for Tony Mowbray's side.

Player to watch: Marvin Emnes

Dutch striker Emnes has been in good form this season. Although his sensational early-season form has dropped off to a certain extent, he still most certainly possesses the class to score against defences at this level.

The Rams Team News:

Nathan Tyson has suffered yet another setback with his troublesome groin injury and is not in contention.

John Brayford is unavailable, as is Steven Davies, who underwent a five hour operation following a hefty head injury.

Player to watch: Theo Robinson

Theo 'Theeeeeeeeooo' Robinson certainly has his critics at Derby but he seems to be developing a knack of being in the right place at the right time to score for The Rams. Two close range strikes in his last two games is exactly the sort of determination and following in you want to see from your strikers and he seems to be becoming something of a cult hero for the Pride Park faithful.

Match Facts & Stats

Derby County last 5:

Reading (a) 2-2

Leicester City (a) 0-4

Barnsley (h) 1-1

Millwall (h) 3-0



eading last 5:

Nottingham Forest (a) 0-2

Millwall (h) 1-1

Reading (a) 0-0

Leicester City (h) 0-0

Ipswich Town (h) 0-0

Next Fixtures:

Derby County vs. Portsmouth, Sat 29th October, 15:00pm, The Championship


Writer:RobB
Date:Friday October 21 2011
Time: 3:30PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
P Brighton 44 28 8 8 92 35
2 Newcastle 43 26 7 10 85 37
3 Reading 44 24 7 13 79 1
4 Sheff Wed 44 23 9 12 78 15
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9 Brentford 44 18 9 17 63 12
10 Derby County 44 17 12 15 63 2
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13 Cardiff 44 16 11 17 59 -2
14 Barnsley 44 15 12 17 57 0
15 Wolves 43 15 10 18 55 -2
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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