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Derby are unbeaten since the 28th of November in the league and are flying high near the top of the table. But the last two results have been disappointing for the Rams as they would have hoped to have got more than 2 points from games against an inconsistent Bristol City and mid-table Millwall.
However, manager Gary Rowett would be encouraged by the fact that they haven’t conceded in those two games and are still right up in 2nd place, even if the chasing pack are closing in. Derby will have to put their nerves behind them and grind out a win this weekend when Brentford visit Pride Park.
The Rams appear to have no new injury concerns. Joe Ledley, Sam Winnall and Ikechi Anya will be hoping for recalls. New signing Kasey Palmer could make his debut for the club.
The Derby stopper has been pushing for an England recall and is by far the best goalkeeper outside the Premier League. Usually makes one or two important saves during the game to keep the Rams ahead.
The former Liverpool defender has been a solid member of a Derby defence that very rarely concedes. He’s beginning to become a fan favourite.
The Derby captain has had an exceptional season in black and white so far. Strong, powerful and willing to put his body on the line, he has everything you need from a good centre-back.
Curtis Davies is also enjoying life at Pride Park this season, he is excellent on the ball and so good at reading passes.
The Derby defence picks itself at the moment but Craig Forsyth is arguably the weak link. He can sometimes go missing and loves to get forward, which actually leaves his teammates exposed.
Huddlestone is a Derby County youth product and has been doing very well on his return to Pride Park, he is not as fast as he once was and needs a player around him to do the running for him. However, nobody else in the team has the range of passing that he does.
Thorne has recently signed a new contract and seems to be over his early season fitness woes. He looks ‘busier’ than he has ever been in the past few seasons and seems to have added more grit to his game.
Known to pop up with the odd goal, Weimann could do with ending his team’s barren run this weekend.
Derby County’s top scorer Vydra should sit just behind the striker with a roaming role to pick up the ball and run at defences. Very hard to stop once in full flight.
The loanee from Chelsea could well make his debut for Derby. Could start on the right-wing as Rowett wouldn’t probably move Vydra away from a central position.
The new face in the dressing room will most likely be given this game to prove he deserves a place in the starting lineup. Derby need the goals and perhaps Jerome can provide them.