Derby County - Coventry City

Derby County hold the 20th position in Championship with just two points more than clubs from relegation zone. They’ve noticed three consecutive defeats, Middlesbrough 0-2 (away), QPR 2-4 (home) and Ipswich Town 0-1 (away). Club has lots of problems with injured players and that is main reason for mentioned bad run of results (midfielder Dean Moxey is the only outfield player who have been on the field for every minute of all Derby's league matches this season). Four key players are sidelined, strikers Chris Commons and Rob Hulse and defenders Dean Leacock and Shaun Barker, while midfielder Jay McEveley has been recovered and is expected to appear tonight. They also have problems with ball transition and lack of creativity in the midfield. They create goal opportunities only after set pieces or shooting from a distance. The Rams have the biggest number of defeats this season (nine), while six of them have been by a single goal - more than any other club. Manager Nigel Clough desperately needs a win tonight, but I don’t see them as, even slight favorites.


At the start of the season, club’s officials and manager Chris Coleman were stating that club has an ambition to make one step more comparing with previous seasons and make a break to the play-off position. And season started well, as Coventry defeated Ipswich and Barnsley in opening two rounds. But, soon they went back in poor reality, that is team is consisted of not even average Championship players. Chris Coleman still is one of the most talented managers in second tier and Leon Best (best league player in October) and Clinton Morrison are maybe the best attacking duo in this level, but that’s almost all. The most they can achieve is calling of the most unpredictable club in Championship. Coventry have noticed five games without a win, two draws (Leicester and WBA, both at home) and three defeats (Sheffield Wednesday, Cardiff City and Reading). Also, they failed to score in three of their last four games. Home defeat against Reading was a big blow for Coleman who still has to cope with the absence of first goalie Keiren Westwood. Club brought defender Leon Barnett on-loan deal from   WBA and he has been included in the squad. Their total of 17 points after the first 15 games is their lowest return for four years.


Both teams are in bad run and have a lots of problems with scoring. Also injuries on both sides will additionally weaken their quality. Derby have a small advantage in fans at Pride Park, while Coventry  have duo Best-Morrison who finally should score. Both sides won’t risk too much and would be absolutely satisfied with one point. 2.43 at Pinnacle. Draw, correct score 0-0.


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