Earlier in the season The Rams hammered Watford 4-1 at Pride Park with Derby riding on the crest of a wave in a sensational run of form. Tomorrow, the sides meet in very different circumstances. Malky Mackay’s Watford have won six games on the spin and are scoring goals for fun, with 19 netted during the half dozen victories. Derby on the other hand, have lost four of the last six, winning one and drawing the other. Having been dumped out of the F.A. cup by Non-League Crawley on Monday night, restless fans are demanding better from their team. Much better.
Rams marksman Kris Commons is keen to get the Crawley humiliation out of his system with a result at Watford: ‘With the game coming up on Saturday, we haven’t got too much time to dwell on what happened,’ said Commons.
‘It was important for us to get back in training on Tuesday and Wednesday to try to thrash out the frustration of the Crawley game.
‘When you are part of a defeat like that, you need to get it out of your mind as quickly as possible and focus on the next game, because we will need all of our effort and concentration for a tricky match at Watford.
‘We need to get this out of our system and bounce into Watford with our chest out and head up high.
‘We need to try to be confident and show that this hasn’t had too big an effect on us.
‘We all need to give 100% because, if we don’t, Watford are another team that can hurt us.’
Watford manager Malky Mackay is keen to avoid complacency and regards Derby as dangerous opponents despite the recent contrasting fortunes of the sides: ‘Nobody at Watford reads into the form of other teams,’ Mackay said. ‘Derby beat us well up at Pride Park so I firmly expect it to be a very tough game on Saturday.
‘They have a good, experienced manager and are a big club, who have been on good runs themselves at certain points this season, like most teams have.
‘On any given day anything can happen in this division, even though we are at home and on a good run. They go into the match off the back of a disappointing cup result but sometimes you can feel the repercussions of that.
‘We know it will be a tough game and will go into the match in the right frame of mind.’
The Hornets Team News:
Ex-Rams loanee John Eustace will miss out on facing his former side with a calf injury. Hornets winger Don Cowie might not recover in time as he has been suffering from an illness.
Player to watch: Danny Graham
Ex-Derby forward Graham has netted 14 league goals this season. He was hopeless for Derby in a loan spell a number of years ago, so is destined to score against us.
The Rams Team News:
Miles Addison may make his first league start in over a year after he came through the Crawley loss unscathed. Conor Doyle is back in contention following his trip to the USA on international duty but Stephen Pearson and Stephen Davies are both 50/50 to make the game with slight knocks.
Player to watch: Kris Commons
Commons has had a few off-games recently and had a very poor game and shocking penalty against Crawley. Despite this, he is always a dangerous player to face, as his 13 goals for the season testify.
Match Facts & Stats
Reading (h) 1-2
Nottingham Forest (a) 2-5
Preston North End (a) 2-1
Millwall (h) 0-0
Crawley Town (a) 1-2
Queens Park Rangers (a) 3-1
Cardiff City (h) 4-1
Portsmouth (h) 3-0
Scunthorpe United (a) 2-1
Hartlepool United (h) 4-1
Derby County vs. Derby County, Sat 22nd January, 13:00pm, The Championship