Paul Jewell makes his first return to Pride Park after leaving Pride Park two years ago after a disastrous tenure as Manager of Derby. Ironically, he returns as boss of Ipswich Town, the side who beat The Rams 1-0 at Pride Park in what was his last game in charge.
But the focus should not be on a former manager. It should be on getting a desperately needed three points with a gutsy, passionate performance. Rams fans have seen some poor displays in recent weeks and the loss of Kris Commons to Celtic is a big one, but, if the side pull together and ll perform to the max, they could easily achieve victory.
Rams full-back John Brayford says only hard work and commitment will see them through tough game in the Championship, after the terrible recent run of results: ‘I don’t think anyone can question our desire or togetherness,’ said the defender.
‘Results haven’t gone for us in the past few weeks but the desire is still there.
‘I felt we totally deserved something from the Forest game.
‘I really don’t think we deserved to lose it.
‘We should have come away with at least a point, maybe even three – but, again, it didn’t happen for us.’
The Rams Team News:
Kris Common`s move to Celtic leaves Nigel Clough with a few selection worries. It seems likely that The Rams will line up in a conventional 4-4-2 as opposed to the 4-2-3-1 they have deployed since the start of the season. Chris Porter and one of either Alberto Bueno, Steven Davies and Tomasz Cywka are the likely candidates. Dean Leacock sits out the match as he begins a two-match ban for getting ten bookings this season, so Miles Addison may drop back from his usual midfield slot. Dean Moxey will be replaced by Gareth Roberts after the former left for Crystal Palace on deadline day. He would have been suspended anyway following his red card against Forest.
Player to watch: Tomasz Cywka
According to Rams manager Nigel Clough, Pole Cywka has been played out of position so far this season, and is, in actual fact, and out and out striker. He is being tipped for a starting berth and one of a front two against Ipswich. All of his four goals this season have come at home.
The Tractor Boys Team News:
Midfielder Jimmy Bullard could make his first appearance for the club after signing on loan from Hull City. He is a talented player but constantly seems to be getting injured so do not be surprised if he pulls up during the game. Winger Adam Drury looks set for a place on the bench after signing from non-league Luton Town on deadline day.
Player to watch: Carlos Edwards
Winger Edwards is a mecurial talent, often fantastic on the flanks, often nowhere to be seen. Rams fans will be hoping he doesn’t score one of the trademark shots from distance he became well known for whilst with his former club, Sunderland.
Match Facts & Stats
Preston North End (a) 2-1
Millwall (h) 0-0
Crawley Town (a) 1-2
Watford (a) 0-3
Nottingham Forest (h) 0-1
Chelsea (a) 0-7
Arsenal (h) 1-0
Millwall (a) 1-2
Doncaster Rovers (h) 3-2
Arsenal (a) 0-3
Portsmouth vs. Derby County, Sat 5th February, 15:00pm, The Championship