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Welcome to the Rams!

Derby County have been to Nailsworth just once before – a memorable 3rd Round FA Cup tie in January 2009.  It still ranks as one of FGR’s best attendances – 4,836 people saw the game.  On the day Rovers led 2-0 before being pegged back, and it was 3-3 in the 87th minute before an FGR red card followed by a Derby penalty saw the Rams squeak home 3-4.  Robbie Savage was an unused Derby sub on the day.

The second meeting between the sides was at Pride Park last December.  Derby enjoyed a comfortable 4-0 win, David McGoldrick scoring a hat-trick.  24,334 people watched this game – at the time this was the biggest crowd FGR had ever played in front of (a record that was narrowly overtaken when Rovers went to Portman Road to play Ipswich).

Expect the away end to be busy!

How are they doing?

Derby started the season a little slowly before hitting their stride mid-season (winning 7 of 8 games after beating Rovers just before Christmas).  Recently, their form has become very worrying for their supporters.  They have had losses against Plymouth, Barnsley, Peterborough, Ipswich & Fleetwood in their last 8 games.  They have interspersed these losses with wins against Cheltenham and Oxford and a draw against Shrewsbury in that 8-game run.

However, this run of form has dropped Derby to 7th in the table (behind Bolton & Peterborough on goal difference).  Automatic promotion is no longer realistic, and Derby are in danger of even failing to finish in the play-off places.

Derby have been performing appreciably better at home than away this season.  They have lost 4 of their last 5 away games and only a 90th minute winner gave them a 3-2 victory at Oxford Utd.  That said, they have beaten most lower-ranked opposition away from home but have particularly struggled when they visit top half of the table teams.

It will be a tough contest for the men in green – Derby have scored more than twice as many goals as Rovers this season and conceded far fewer.

Who to watch for?

Derby’s strike force of James Collins (number 9), David McGoldrick (number 10) & Nathaniel Mendez-Laing (number 11) are the threats up front with 9 goals, 16 goals and 7 goals respectively.  Both McGoldrick and Collins have played for the Irish national team.

Chipping in with 7 goals is another Irish international, midfielder Conor Hourihane (number 4).

Rovers experienced the threat of these Derby frontmen at Pride Park last December.  Nathaniel Mendez-Laing opened the scoring after just 5 minutes, before David McGoldrick scored a hat-trick and Derby ended up as 4-0 winners.

Fact File: Conor Hourihane - Blog - Derby County

Conor Hourihane (number 4), Derby’s skilful Irish midfielder.

Fact File: James Collins - Blog - Derby County

James Collins (number 9) is Derby’s 2nd leading scorer with 9 goals.

Derby County's fomer Peterborough United player could miss the League One game against his old club | Peterborough Telegraph

Winger Nathaniel Mendez Laing (number 11).

David McGoldrick in pre-season action for Derby County

The distinctive-looking David McGoldrick (number 10) has 16 goals and is Derby’s leading scorer.

The Manager

Derby’s manager is Paul Warne, who took over from Wayne Rooney in September after a brief spell with Liam Rosenior as interim head coach.

Warne had been at Rotherham for 6 years prior to his move to Derby and had twice won promotion from League 1 with the Yorkshire club.

Paul Warne.

The Club

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.

Fancy being paid to be Derby County's Rammie or Ewie? Now is your chance! - Derbyshire Live

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.

File:Clough and Taylor Statue Derby.JPG - Wikimedia Commons

Brian Clough & Peter Taylor statue at Pride Park …….

The Sporting Statues Project: Brian Clough: Old Market Square, Nottingham

……. but Clough is also immortalised in Nottingham, for his time with arch-rivals Nottingham Forest