Derby County Under-18s will hope to make it seven wins from seven as they host Manchester City on Tuesday in a match that could power the in-form team five points clear at the top of the Premier League – North table.
In fact, their incredible run in the league surpasses that six-match run after their most recent defeat came in the Premier League Cup. Justin Walker’s side haven’t looked back since and have seen off fierce competition from Liverpool and Middlesbrough to storm to the top of the league.
Derby will be out for revenge on Tuesday as they face the same side that knocked them out of the FA Youth Cup. Tyree Wilson put his side 1-0 from the penalty spot as the Rams headed down the tunnel in the lead.
The match, being played at Pride Park, was no short of action with two goals in the second half for the visitors - courtesy of Taylor Harwood-Bellis and Jeremie Frimpong – came after Felix Nmecha had been shown a straight red card.
The controversy didn’t end there as Erin Cashin and Jason Knight saw red for off-the-ball incidents as the match finished 2-1 and with only 19 players on the pitch.
It would be fair to say that City have been a somewhat bogey team for Derby this season. They remain the only team left in their League that Derby have failed to beat after having played them twice.
Before their loss in the Cup, the Rams were held to a 2-2 draw. Morgan Whittaker gave Derby the lead before half time, however he and the rest of his team found themselves behind after Keke Simmonds netted a late brace.
Jordan Brown came on to snatch a last-minute equaliser to send the Rams back down the M6 with a well-earned point.
On the match, off the back of their superb 5-0 victory over West Bromwich Albion, Walker commended his players’ ethic and says that preparation will remain the same.
“They’ve contributed brilliantly throughout the season in how we prepare for games during the week and nothing will be any different for the next three games.
“The players are a pleasure to work with, on a daily basis they give it their all, they push each other to improve and they’re all fighting and chomping at the bit to play for the club.”
Words by Joseph Lightfoot