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Andy Phillips looks ahead to Tuesday's Carabao Cup tie against Derby County at Blundell Park.

22 August 2017

Town host Derby County in the rearranged Carabao Cup First Round tie on Tuesday night (7:45pm).

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22 August 2017

The original game was abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch after 20 minutes with Derby County 1-0 up through a Richard Keogh goal and the sides will now do battle again with the winner facing a trip to Barnsley in the second round. 

After two losses on the bounce, Town boss Russell Slade will be looking for a positive performance against the Championship side ahead of a return to League action on Saturday afternoon. 

Team news

Town will be without Sam Jones, who will serve the first match of a three game suspension after being sent off at Stevenage, which means it will be a welcome time for James Berrett to return to the fold after a suspension of his own.

Awasi Asante and Jamey Osborne remain out for the near future, Scott Vernon looks likely to miss out with his calf starin but could be back at the weekend, whilst Sean McAllister has suffered a reoccurence of his ongoing groin problem so is unlikely to be involved.

Derby could hand a debut to former Manchester United youngster Tom Lawrence after he joined from Leicester City in the week, and they are likely to make several changes to their side ahead of a trip to Sheffield United at the weekend.

A League Cup history

The two have a recent history of meeting each other in the League Cup in recent years, with it only being last August when over 1,700 Mariners fans made the trip to the iPro Stadium at the same stage of the competition.

A spirited performance from Town saw them go down to a 1-0 defeat after Richard Keogh's header midway through the second half that day, and Derby went on to beat Carlisle United before going down 3-0 to Liverpool in the third round.

 

Town boss Russell Slade and assistant Paul Wilkinson have both already played big parts in Town's past success in the competition. A Gary Jones winner saw Town beat the Rams during his first spell in August 2006 before the memorable win over Tottenham Hotspur in the next round, whilst Wilkinson's winner against Everton in November 1984 is one of the most memorable goals in the club's history, so they will be hoping for a good cup run if possible.  

Expectations high at Derby

It has been all change at Derby since the sides met last campaign, with manager Nigel Pearson being dismissed in October and former England boss Steve McClaren also failing to deliver improvement after that, which led to Gary Rowett taking charge in March.

Rowett was the architect of Burton Albion's rise to the Championship and was turning things around with Birmingham City before he was unceremoniously relieved of his duties by their new owners, and he will now be looking to build on that at Derby.

They lost two key players to the Premier League in the summer in midfielder Will Hughes and  winger Tom Ince for £7m to Watford and £11m to Huddersfield respectively, but with former Hull City pair Tom Huddlestone (who began his career at the club) and Curtis Davies coming in along with Liverpool defender Andre Wisdom, expectations will still be high at the Rams.

They opened their campaign with a 1-1 draw at Sunderland in front of the television cameras prior to the abandoned fixture before a home loss to Wolverhampton Wanderers but two wins in a row, with the latest being a 2-1 success at Bolton Wanderers, have got their opening stages of the season back on track.

Managers in summary

Russell Slade: ''Your next is game is always the most important,  it has to be Derby and what we're after is a good performance and a level that we're happy enough with. The depth of their squad is terrific and whatever team that comes tomorrow will be a difficult one to deal with and will cause us problems, no doubt about that. It's about how we react tomorrow. A reaction is important, we all get knocked down in this game and its about how you get up from it. '' 

Gary Rowett: ''It's not ideal to go back somewhere you've played in the past but it is what is and in some ways we have a game this week we'd probably organise ones for some that haven't had game time so rather than play behind closed doors, we get a really good competitive game with a crowd there and a meaning on the game. After reading Russell's recent comments after a couple of performances or at least a performance he hasn't been happy with, he's had them in for extra training so I'm pretty sure that they'll be a strong team and motivated so it'll be a good test and hopefully this time we won't need our speedos and armbands to play there.''

 


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