Derby County play at Pride Park, close to the centre of Derby. The stadium has been the club’s home since 1997 when they moved from their old Baseball Ground home. It seats over 33,000 fans, so is bigger than 4 Premier League clubs. Derby’s gates have averaged over 27,000 this season!
Derby are a huge club in many ways. Founded in 1884, they were one of the 12 founder members of the Football League in 1888. Since then they have only spent 5 seasons outside the top 2 tiers of the EFL. Derby have therefore sunk to an unaccustomed low in their history. They have had brief dips into football’s 3rd tier in the 1950’s and 1980’s, but this is the first time for a while they have been at this level.
In their best days Derby have been the top side in the country on 2 occasions (in 1972 and 1975) and have one FA Cup triumph (in 1946). They reached the semi-finals of the European Cup in 1973 where they lost to Juventus.
The glory years of the late 60’s and early 70’s was under the stewardship of Brian Clough & Peter Taylor. Such was the impact this management team had on the club that there is a 9ft bronze statue of the pair outside Pride Park.
The last time Derby were in the Premier League was 2008. It was a short stay. They were relegated with just 1 win all season and the lowest ever Premier League points total.
Last season’s problems were always in the news – Wayne Rooney in charge, a 15-point deduction, eventual relegation by a 7 point margin. The club were eventually taken over by a local property developer, David Clowes. The takeover meant the club had avoided a 15 point deduction as they started in League 1 but are still subject to some transfer restrictions.
No surprise that Derby’s mascot is Rammie ….. occasionally accompanied by Ewie!!
Derby’s list of previous managers is something of a role of honour of English football legends. Dutchman Philip Cocu in 2019 is their only manager who wasn’t English or Scottish. Other than Clough and Rooney, previous managers include Frank Lampard, Steve McLaren (twice), Tommy Docherty, Nigel Clough, and Bristol City’s Nigel Pearson.