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The Big Match Preview: Cardiff City (H)

The Rams
vs.
The Bluebirds

Pride Park Stadium

02/11/2011

19:45

Fifth placed Derby take on a Cardiff side in tenth position, although only three points separate the teams.

Derby bagged their first three points haul in six games with the win over Portsmouth at the weekend and will be keen to build on that win in the night game against free-scoring Cardiff.

Vital Quotes:

Rams boss Nigel Clough has hailed the form of centre-half Jason Shackell and revealed that the former Barnsley has been playing with an injury: 'I thought he was great on Saturday. He has been struggling with his hip a little bit in the last few weeks but he hasn't complained and he has battled on and he was back to his commanding best,' said Clough ahead of the visit of Cardiff on Wednesday night.

'Jason's performance against Portsmouth was similar to that in his first game for us against Birmingham when he seemed to deal with any threat that came our way. He does look a very imposing centre-half when he is in that form.'

Derby weren't Malky Mackay's tips for strong starters: 'Derby and Palace are the surprises of this division so far,' said Mackay. "They are not clubs anybody outside of those clubs would have tipped to be right up there.

'I know the two managers, Nigel Clough and Dougie Freedman, well and they are doing good jobs.'

The Rams Team News:

Mason Bennett may return to the starting line-up as injuries continue to bite The Rams' forward line.

Theo Robinson limped out of the 3-1 win over Pompey at the weekend and schoolboy Bennett looks to be in pole position for s starting spot alongside Mason Bennett.

Mark O'Brien is likely to play through the pain barrier with a shoulder injury.

Player to watch: Chris Maguire

Scottish forward Maguire scored his first league goal for The Rams at the weekend and was clearly delighted to do so.

He has found his opportunities limited since signing from Aberdeen in the summer but looked very impressive in his first league start south of the border.

The Bluebirds Team News:

Bluebirds defender Anthony Gerrard is back after suspension.

Kenny Miller should be fit to face his former side following a head injury.

Player to watch: Aron Gunnarsson

Icelandic midfielder Gunnarsson has netted three goals in his last three league games for The Bluebirds and looks like a shrewd acquisition for Malky McKay's side.

Match Facts & Stats

Derby County last 5:

Portsmouth (h) 3-1

Middlesbrough (a) 0-2

Reading (a) 2-2

Southampton (h) 1-1

Leicester City (a) 0-4

Cardiff City last 5:

Leeds United (a) 1-1

Burnley (h) 1-0

Barnsley (h) 5-3

Peterborough United (a) 3-4

Ipswich Town (h) 2-2

Next Fixtures:

Peterborough United vs. Derby County, Sat 5th November, 15:00pm, The Championship


Writer:RobB
Date:Wednesday November 2 2011
Time: 2:31PM

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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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