Date:Friday January 27 2012
Pride Park Stadium
The Rams will take on Premier League Stoke City tomorrow in the fourth round of this season's FA Cup.
The Potters, who sit in eight place in the Premier League and reached the final of the competition last year, will provide formidable opposition, not because of their supposed one-dimensional long-ball tactics, but because they play good football and have solid Premier League players.
Tony Pulis has done a tremendous job at the Britannia Stadium and has paid tribute to The Rams in his pre-match comments.
As the game is reasonably local, Stoke will bring a large, vociferous support and the game should have a good atmosphere.
John Brayford was over the moon when he saw The Rams had drawn his hometown club in the cup: 'I was delighted when I saw the draw. As soon as it was made I had a load of texts from my mates and the banter started straight away.
'All my family and friends are from the area so personally, it's a good draw. From a Derby County perspective it's a really good chance for us to go toe-to-toe with a Premier League side competing in Europe.
'Hopefully we can put on a good performance, give them a game and hopefully progress to the next round.'
Ryan Noble has not been given permission to face Stoke so Nigel Clough may give youngster Mason Bennett a chance alongside Callum Ball.
James Bailey has been ill but is fit to play The Potters and should play although Jeff Hendrick played very well in the second half against Burnley.
Speedy trickster Ward will have to produce some of his magic to break down the Potters' defence.
He is consistently excellent but could well raise his game against Premier League opposition.
Stoke manager Tony Pulis has no fresh injury worries.
He may decide to shake things up but will be keen to reach the final for a second year in a row.
Lanky frontman Crouch will provide a stern test for Shaun Barker and Jason Shackell at the heart of the Rams defence.
He has proved to be an excellent acquisition for Tony Pulis.
Derby County last 5:
Burnley (a) 0-0
Coventry City (h) 1-0
Crystal Palace (h) 1-0
Hull City (a) 1-0
West Ham United (h) 2-1
Stoke City last 5:
West Bromwich Albion (h) 1-2
Liverpool (a) 0-0
Gillingham (a) 3-1
Blackburn Rovers (a) 2-1
Wigan Athletic (h) 2-2
Barnsley vs. Derby County, Tue 31st January, 19:45pm, The Championship
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Date:Friday January 27 2012
Trip To Portman Road To Be Televised (Saturday November 22 2014)
Butland's Stay Extended (Friday November 21 2014)
Russell And Chrisite Earn First Caps (Thursday November 20 2014)
Final Day Fixtures Set (Wednesday November 19 2014)
Football Aid 2015 - Play at the iPro Stadium! (Monday November 10 2014)
Rams Thrash Wolves (Saturday November 8 2014)
Stats: Derby County v Wolves (Saturday November 8 2014)
Rams Back To Winning Ways (Wednesday November 5 2014)
Stats: Derby County v Huddersfield Town (Wednesday November 5 2014)
Vital Derby Needs You (Wednesday November 5 2014)
|1. Derby County||18||10||5||3||+18||35|
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