Derby County hit the road for the final time of the regular 2017/18 Sky Bet Championship season, making the short trip across the Midlands for a sold-out meeting with Aston Villa.
The Rams travel buoyed by their huge win over Cardiff City (kick-off: 3pm) and here, dcfc.co.uk has collated all the information you need ahead of the clash with Steve Bruce’s side…
WHAT’S THE LATEST TEAM NEWS
As has been the case for the last few fixtures, Gary Rowett is going to have a similar squad to call upon when his side head to Villa Park this weekend.
Arguably his biggest decision is whether or not he will recall Matej Vydra to the starting XI after he stepped off the substitutes bench to score a crucial goal in the 3-1 win over Cardiff City.
Sam Winnall and Ikechi Anya remain ruled out of action.
WHAT WAS SAID AHEAD OF THE TRIP TO VILLA PARK?
Speaking to RamsTV ahead of the weekend’s trip to face Villa, Gary Rowett said: “It’s a tough place to go and we know that it’s not going to be an easy game. They’re a very good side and very experienced like ourselves.
“They have some great individual players and we are going to have to be incredibly physical and make sure that we don’t allow them space.
“In my opinion, when [Jack] Grealish plays well, Villa play well. He really has been a catalyst for their best performances.”
However, Rowett’s only focus is on drawing out the best from his squad to recreate the courageous and determined performance shown against Cardiff.
“We’re not worried about the opposition, we’ll be respectful but we know that when we’re on the top of our game, we can beat anyone.
“Having put so much effort in on Tuesday night, the challenge will be to do the same again.”
ONE TO WATCH
As Gary Rowett touches upon above, Jack Grealish has proven to be an integral figure for Aston Villa over the course of the second half of the season and is sure to be a key figure for them as they look to return to the Premier League.
Since missing the first three months of the campaign through injury, the 22-year-old has bounced back to make 26 appearances for the Villans and score three goals – two of which have come in his last four matches and include his stunning match-winning strike against Cardiff City.
Despite his young age, Grealish has been around the Villa first-team squad for a number of years.
The midfielder broke into the senior set-up during the 2014/15 season at the age of 19, having already made the substitutes bench at 16.
Grealish enjoyed a loan spell with Notts County and impressed heavily, recording five goals and seven assists in 38 appearances for the Magpies.
In total, he has made 105 appearances for Villa.
Notably, Grealish has also part of the England Under-21s squad that were crowned Toulon Tournament champions in 2016.
HOW I CAN SECURE MY SEAT
Derby County will be backed by a sold out away end when they travel to Villa Park to face Aston Villa in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday.
The Rams’ allocation of 2,671 tickets have been snapped up as Gary Rowett’s side look to build on Tuesday’s fine victory against Cardiff City and cement their play-off position in their final away league game of the season.
Derby will be aiming to complete a league double over their hosts, after goals from former Villan Andreas Weimann and Johnny Russell secured the three points against Steve Bruce’s side at Pride Park Stadium back in December.
The Derby County Ticket Office is running a waiting list should they have any tickets returned.
Those interested in being added to the waiting list should email [email protected] with their name and Fan ID.
WHAT HAPPENED LAST TIME OUT?
DERBY COUNTY 2-0 ASTON VILLA
Saturday 16th December, 2017
Derby County made a huge statement back in December with their first win against Aston Villa since 2001 back in December at Pride Park Stadium.
Andreas Weimann profited after a crucial error from Glenn Whelan to give Gary Rowett’s side the lead, before Johnny Russell sealed a third successive win in stoppage time.
Derby County: Carson; Baird, Keogh, Davies, Forsyth; Huddlestone, Ledley; Weimann (Russell, 57), Vydra (Thorne, 86), Johnson; Nugent (Martin, 71)
Substitutes not used: Mitchell, Pearce, Wisdom, Winnall
Aston Villa: Johnstone; Elmohamady, Chester, Jedinak, Taylor; Snodgrass, Whelan (Hogan, 65), Hourihane, Adomah; Grealish; Onomah (Agbonlahor, 83)
Substitutes not used: Steer, De Laet, Hutton, Elphick, Bjarnason
WHO’S THE MAN IN THE MIDDLE?
Scott Duncan will be the man in the middle when Derby County travel to Villa Park on Saturday in the clash with Aston Villa.
Duncan has officiated 37 matches so far this term with the majority coming in the Sky Bet Championship, from which he has produced 108 yellow cards and five red.
This match will be the third involving the Rams that he has taken charge of this term. Duncan officiated Derby’s 2-0 defeat over Sheffield Wednesday in October as well as the 1-0 loss to Ipswich a month later.
In total, this weekend’s referee had officiated eight games involving the Rams over the course of his career that has seen four wins, two draws and two defeats tasted.
Duncan will be assisted by Robert Hyde and Philip Dermott on the lines, whilst Mark Heywood has been appointed as the fourth official.
HOW TO FOLLOW THE ACTION?
Saturday afternoon will see RamsTV’s Colin Gibson joined by Marc Edworthy and Sam Winnall LIVE from 2.15pm. The trio will be building up to kick off at 3pm by looking in depth at both sides with the use of stats, match footage and detailed analysis.
As this fixture has been selected for live TV coverage and due to international broadcasting rights, RamsTV will only be able to broadcast the match live in select countries, although a live audio stream of the game will also be available. Please click here for more information.
Here’s a full rundown of what’s coming up on RamsTV:
- Pre-Match Interviews – RamsTV speaks to Gary Rowett and defender Curtis Davies as they take a break from training to talk about the big game at Villa Park.
- The Last Meeting: Aston Villa – Relive the best of RamsTV’s coverage from Derby’s impressive win over Villa at Pride Park Stadium back in December.
- Pre-Match Press Conference: Aston Villa – Gary Rowett and Andre Wisdom talk to the local and national press ahead of the Rams’ trip to Villa Park.
- The Preview Show: Aston Villa (6pm) – Colin Gibson is joined in the studio by Marc Edworthy and Roger Davies as they discuss what it’ll take for the Rams to bring back three points from Villa Park.
- Matchday Live: Aston Villa Vs Derby County (2.15pm) – Colin Gibson will be joined LIVE in the RamsTV Studio by Sam Winnall and Marc Edworthy as they cover all the key talking points leading up to kick-off (3pm).
- Due to international broadcasting rights, RamsTV will be streaming the game live only in select countries, click here for more information, RamsTV subscribers will be able to listen to audio coverage of the game and also watch extended highlights and a replay of the full 90 minutes the following day.
- Post-Match Extra: Aston Villa (5.30pm approx.) – RamsTV’s interactive Facebook Live show will feature the thoughts of Rams fans as well as a post-match reaction from manager Gary Rowett.
- Match Highlights: Aston Villa (12pm) – RamsTV’s extended highlights from the game the day before, featuring all the goals and key incidents from the day before.
- Matchday Relived: Aston Villa (6pm) – Watch the entirety of RamsTV’s matchday production including the full 90 minutes of action along with the pre-game, half and full time analysis from the team in the RamsTV studio.
- The Review Show: Aston Villa (6pm) – Former Rams defenders Michael Johnson and Marc Edworthy join Owen Bradley to analyse Derby’s performance against Villa.
The RamsTV streaming service is available to all supporters who register on dcfc.co.uk.
To access the full RamsTV streaming service will cost the following:
First-Team Audio Commentary (worldwide) - £45 annual subscription or £5 per month
First-Team Pay Per Game - Match Streaming (outside UK) - £5 for the individual game
A link to packages can be found here.
The two premium services are in addition to the regular pre-match and post-match interviews on RamsTV.
Supporters will also be able to follow all of the action, as usual, across our social media channels.
We will be providing behind the scenes content across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, where we will also provide a blow-by-blow account of proceedings at Villa Park.