Preview - West Bromwich Albion v Derby County
Friday, 26th Feb 2010 09:25
Away to the Baggies - can we do Forest a favour and dent the Baggies' chances of automatic promotion, while avoiding a 22-player all-in brawl?
West Bromwich Albion v Derby County
Coca Cola Championship
The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
Saturday 27th February 2010 - 3:00pm
Current League Position: 3/24
Quotes from the manager:
DiMatteo speaking to the BBC after the extra time defeat by Reading:
"I'm destroyed. We were in the driving seat. It wasn't a dangerous situation for Reading's late equaliser. We just needed to clear the ball."
"We put a lot of effort in and we worked very hard to win the game, then we come away with nothing.
"We just didn't defend the second and third goals, we gave them gifts."
Current Baggies Squad:
No. Position. Player
Quotes from the Captain:
Derby Captain Robbie Savage talking about last weekend's scuffle:
"After seeing their captain scythed down like that by an horrendous lunge, I want my team-mates to react like that."
"Are they supposed to just stand there and say, 'let's get on with it?'"
"Nobody got booked or sent off after it, so it couldn't have been that bad."
"When you are in the heat of the battle on the pitch, your first reaction is to stick up for your team-mates."
"When you've actually played the game, you knows what it means to people."
"That was a career-ending tackle, in my mind, and I think he did it on purpose."
Current Rams Squad:
No. Position. Player
What the bookies think:
First scorer: Roman Bednar 4/1, Rob Hulse, Chris Porter 8/1
Information for travelling fans:
Driving: It's about 50 miles to the Hawthorns. Take the A38 south and either take the M6 Toll to junction JT8 or the regular M6. joint the M5 and leave at J1. The Hawthorns is about half a mile along the A41. Watch out for speed cameras.
Parking: There's on-street parking if you are early enough and various car parks if you aren't.
Drinking: There are no pubs close to the ground that welcome away fans. Most away fans congregate at the Vine which is back towards West Bromwich town centre on the A41.
The pub looks small from the outside but has Tardis-like properties as it's huge inside. It has a barbecue serving very good Indian food. A bonus is that it's fairly easy to park around there and walk to the ground. Allow yourself about 15 minutes.
Six points above the relegation zone is a comfortable position for Nigel Clough and most Derby fans this season.
It's a transition, and although some people have talked about a late push for the play-offs, we simply aren't ready for that yet. Six points will only be comfortable if it stays that way however and there are a couple of worries around Pride Park now.
One is the indiscipline that seems to have leaked into the club.
Okay - almost all of the aggro involving the team has been provoked by third parties - The challenge on Robbie Savage last week was horrific to say the least - but the FA take a dim view of retaliation and referees will be watching for the slightest infringement.
Secondly, the loss of Kris Commons for probably most of what remains of the season - just as he was coming into form - is a hard blow to bear. As soon as he went off against Swansea, we lost our most creative player.
Gilles Sunu came on and did his best but he'd only met his team mates before the game. For much of the game we were hoofing it up to lonesome Rob Hulse.
The obvious replacement is Steve Davies but he's injured again. That Leaves Chris Porter, Gilles Sunnu or Dave Martin to take the roll.
I think I'd go with Sunu. He looked good in the air and a week's training with the team should a least mean he knows what colour we play in. Porter is too similar to Hulse and I've not seen enough of Martin to know if he can do it.
In defence, Jay McEveley is now out for two games following his reaction to his sending off. The obvious replacement for him is Dean Moxey.
West Brom are on a bit of a hiccup at the moment. They just lost out in the FA Cup and have drawn two and lost one of their last three - they will be desperate to get back into the Championship's top two.
They should be up for this one and may come out of the traps all guns blazing - paradoxically, teams that frustrate the Baggies do well against them as they seem to prefer playing against teams that play open attacking football.
As long as we keep our tempers, we could get something from this one.
Bywater, Moxey, Barker, Buxton, Hunt, Savage, Pearson, Green, Tonge, Hulse, Sunu.
Subs: Vidal, Deeney, Pringle, Anderson, Porter, Martin.
WBA 1-1 Derby
Photo: Action Images
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