Three games in, Gary Rowett has predominately utilised a 4-3-3 formation, but Alex Neil is sensing a change in the wind this evening, kick-off: 7:45pm.
His Preston North End side travel to Pride Park Stadium looking to maintain their unbeaten start to the 2017/18 Sky Bet Championship after recording a 1-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday and a credible 0-0 draw at Leeds United.
On the other hand, the Rams have yet to secure a victory so far this term and will be hoping to make it third time lucky when they face the Lilywhites.
In order to do so, Neil, the Preston manager, believes Rowett may switch up his formation.
He told the media: “Knowing Gary for the last few seasons and having played against his teams, they have played with two up front or one with one behind.
“The 4-3-3 is relatively quite different for him in terms of how he wants to play.
“It wouldn’t be a surprise if they come away from a 4-3-3 at some stage.
“I think Derby have been hard-wired for such a long time to play 4-3-3.
“They might stick with it against us but I’m not sure.
“I think it will be an interesting game and it is one I’m looking forward to.”
Whatever line-up Neil and his Preston players come up against, the former Norwich boss is certain that his players are going to be in for a tough night at Pride Park.
Using their last two games as an example, Neil says nobody will be underestimating his side.
He added: “They haven’t won a game yet but they’re a big club, there’s a lot of expectation there and I think it’s going to be a really difficult, but hopefully exciting, game; because we want to go there and try and win it.
“I think that plays right into our hands because I think they expect to turn up and roll Preston over. As the two teams we’ve played so far have found out, that’s certainly not going to be the case.
“We’re focused, we’re determined and we’ve got some really good players – we’ve got to showcase that again.”