Date:Thursday January 12 2012
The Rams face The Sky Blues at the Pride Park looking to make it five wins in a row having beaten Crystal Palace 1-0 in the FA Cup last time out. Theo Robinson`s eighth goal of the season setup a fourth round clash with Premiership Stoke City and with visitors Coventry City currently struggling at the wrong end of the table Derby will be looking to extend their recent winning run.
Coventry lost 2-1 at home to Southampton in their cup tie and currently sit bottom of the Championship without an away win all season. The Sky Blues beat The Rams 2-0 in front of the SkySports camera`s back in early September with goals from Lukas Jutkiewicz and Carl Baker for their first win of the season.
The teams draw 2-2 at Pride Park last season with The Rams coming back from two goals down to level the scores before halftime but couldn`t find a winner after the break and had to settle for a point leaving both sides sitting just above the relegation zone with six games to go.
Nigel Clough is pleased with the new found defensive form shown since his first choice back five have been able to take to the field with the return from injury of Shaun Barker. The Rams have conceded only one goal in the last three games and Clough told dcfc.co.uk:
'We've conceded one goal in four games and that goes to show why we wanted Brayford, Barker, Shackell and Roberts as our back four - with Frank Fielding behind them. Other than the Leeds game, I don't think we've been threatened too much from a defensive point of view for the last month or so."
The Scottish midfielder has been one of The Rams most consistent performers this season and his partnership with James Bailey in the middle of the park in recent weeks has coincided with the good run of results. His tireless running and use of the ball has seen him become a firm favourite with Rams` fans and he is keen to add to his to four goals so far.
The former Birmingham City man has scored twice in his last three games for City and has had a number of good games against The Rams over the years. With his pace down the left a threat the Derby defence will have to be on their toes to keep up the recent run of clean sheets.
Derby County last 5:
Crystal Palace (h) 1-0
Hull City (a) 1-0
West Ham United (h) 2-1
Leeds United (h) 1-0
Ipswich Town (a) 0-1
Coventry City last 5:
Southampton (h) 1-2
West Ham United (a) 0-1
Brighton (h) 2-0
Bristol City (h) 1-0
Peterborough (a) 0-1
Burnley vs. Derby County, Sat 21st January, 15:00, Npower Championship
Date:Thursday January 12 2012
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