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The Big Match Preview: Leicester City (H)

The Rams
vs.
The Foxes

Pride Park Stadium

23/02/2012

19:45

On Sky

On that most traditional of footballing days, a Thursday, The Rams face their East Midlands rivals in front of the Sky Sports cameras.

Derby have failed to hit the back of the net in five out of the last six matches and are in desperate need of goals especially with local bragging rights at stake.

Leicester and Derby have both been inconsistent this season and sit on the same number of points despite the vast difference in the finances of both sides.

As with most games both teams have played this season, it really could go either way.

Vital Quotes:

Rams manager Nigel Clough wants his side to be more clinical when they approach the opposition's penalty area: 'In order to make chances drop our way, we need to do better in both penalty areas.

'We are in every game and we are not that far away; I think that our general play is good enough.

'When we have a nice little move; like we did on Saturday (Vs Southampton), when Paul Green was slipped through down the right-hand side and he crossed it over the back of the goal, John Brayford did exactly the same and Jamie Ward did the same later on.

'It is just time to relax a little bit, concentrate and take that little bit more time and care with our final ball.'

The Rams Team News:

The Rams have received the bad news that John Brayford could miss the rest of the season with torn thigh muscle. Paul Green will play at right-back in his absence.

Craig Bryson could return to the team after missing the hammering at Southampton at the weekend.

Player to watch: Frank Fielding

With goals at a premium for The Rams, a clean sheet is likely to be vital for Derby to pick up points, even at home.

Fielding has been in good form recently, despite conceding four against Southampton, and will need to be on top form to keep out David Nugent and Jermaine Beckford.

The Foxes Team News:

Danny Drinkwater has been out with a foot problem but the former Barnsley loanee could be back for the Pride Park clash.

Influential forward Paul Gallagher is out but Sol Bamba and John Pantsil are back after the Africa Cup of Nations with Ivory Coast and Ghana respectively.

Player to watch: David Nugent

Ex-Preston forward and serial irritant David Nugent has been in terrific form this season with an impressive 13 goals.

The talented striker, who started his career at Bury and had subsequent spells at Portsmouth and Burnley is one of the main figureheads for the immensely annoying practice of shushing and celebrating in front of opposition supporters.

Nevertheless, he is a greatly talented player and has been one of Leicester's best players this season.

Match Facts & Stats

Derby County last 5:

Southampton (a) 0-4

Reading (h) 0-1

Millwall (a) 0-0

Barnsley (a) 2-3

Stoke City (h) 0-2



Leicester City last 5:

Norwich City (a) 2-1

Watford (a) 2-3

Cardiff City (h) 2-1

Brighton & Hove Albion (a) 0-1

Middlesbrough (h) 2-2

Next Fixtures:

Birmingham City vs. Derby County, Sat 3rd March, 15:00pm, The Championship


Writer:RobB
Date:Thursday February 23 2012
Time: 8:56AM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Newcastle 46 29 7 10 94 45
P Brighton 46 28 9 9 93 34
3 Reading 46 26 7 13 85 4
4 Sheff Wed 46 24 9 13 81 15
5 Huddersfield 46 25 6 15 81 -2
6 Fulham 46 22 14 10 80 28
7 Leeds Utd 46 22 9 15 75 14
8 Norwich 46 20 10 16 70 16
9 Derby County 46 18 13 15 67 4
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11 Preston 46 16 14 16 62 1
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13 Aston Villa 46 16 14 16 62 -1
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17 Bristol City 46 15 9 22 54 -6
18 Q.P.R. 46 15 8 23 53 -14
19 Birmingham 46 13 14 19 53 -19
20 Burton 46 13 13 20 52 -14
21 Forest 46 14 9 23 51 -10
R Blackburn 46 12 15 19 51 -12
R Wigan 46 10 12 24 42 -17
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