The Rams face Dario Gradi’s Crewe in the latest leg of their pre-season campaign.
The Rams remain unbeaten so far but they will be facing their toughest test so far against The Alex.
Centre-half Russell Anderson told the official Rams site that whoever starts in defence on the opening day of the season, will have earned it: ‘Whoever gets their name on the teamsheet for the opening game of the season will deserve it,’ said Anderson.
‘The competition is going to be fierce as time goes on and whoever gets into the side will, no doubt, deserve to be there.
‘Last season there were quite a few of us who were injured for too long, myself included, and we weren’t any good to the manager so you can understand why he has strengthened in defence this summer.
‘We have just two weeks now to prove ourselves as players we deserve to be in the team for the opening game, so time is ticking.’
The Alex Team News:
Player to watch: Shaun Miller
Forward Miller has been a regular goalscorer for The Alex for several seasons. He wears the number 9 shirt and will be a handful for the Derby centre-backs.
The Rams Team News:
Nigel Clough will field a strong side for the trip to Gresty Road with Nathan Tyson likely to be given a longer run out than in previous pre-season games.
Player to watch: John Brayford
Reigning player of the season John Brayford will return to his former club for the second time in two years. Last season The Rams crashed out in the League Cup to The Alex and Brayford was one of the few good performers.
Morcambe (a) 1-1
Macclesfield Town (a) 2-2
Burton Albion (a) 3-1