Derby County vs Huddersfield Town preview: Rams looking to continue fine home form
HUDDERSFIELD, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05: Tom Lawrence of Derby County celebrates after scoring his teams second goal of the match during the Sky Bet Championship match between Huddersfield Town and Derby County at John Smith's Stadium on August 05, 2019 in Huddersfield, England. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images

Derby County and Huddersfield Town face off on Saturday afternoon with both sides looking to turn their fortunes around this season. 

The introduction of Wayne Rooney has been vital for the Rams, they have picked up 13 points from a possible 21 and has lifted them up to 13th in the table. 

Concerns are beginning to mount for Huddersfield and Danny Cowley who find themselves only five points clear of the bottom three and in real danger of being pulled into a relegation battle. 

Key Battle

The key battle in this game will be the Rams' centre-forward Chris Martin against Terriers centre-back Richard Stearman.

Martin has been in fine form as of late, scoring in each of his late three Sky Bet Championship appearances. The striker has been in and out of form ever since the 14/15 season but he looks to be scoring consistently at a crucial time for Derby. 

Huddersfield have been shipping goals all season which prompted manager Cowley into bringing in a defender to help sure up their defensive issues. Stearman has helped Huddersfield pick up seven points from their last seven games, including two clean sheets. 

Before Stearman's arrival, The Terriers had only one clean sheet in the previous 12 games. 

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Last Meeting

The last time these two sides met was well back at the start of the season, Philip Cocu and his men would emerge victorious as Lawrence turned in a magical display where he would grab two goals to help his side to a 2-1 victory. 

The game was a fairly contested affair but a mistake was the catalyst for the Rams to pick up their first win of the season.

Huddersfield had Jan Siewart back in charge at this time so this will be the first time that Cocu and Cowley will face off. 

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Team News

Derby County will still be without the injured George Evans but there could be a return for Tom Huddlestone, who has not featured since picking up an injury away at Barnsley back at the start of October.

Goalkeeper Ben Hamer will miss out as he is currently on loan from Huddersfield at Derby, which means a first start in the league for Dutchman Kelle Roos for the first time since the 26th November.

Tommy Elphick is missing for the visitors but there is a potential return for midfielder Alex Pritchard who hasn't featured since the end of November which could provide a much-needed spark for the Terriers. 

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Predicted Line-Ups

Derby County: Roos, Bogle, Wisdom, Clarke, Lowe, Bird, Rooney, Holmes, Lawrence, Waghorn, Martin

Huddersfield Town: Lossl, Simpson, Stearman, Schindler, Toffolo, O'Brien, Hogg, Kachunga, Smith-Rowe, Bacuna, Mounie

Manager's Thoughts

Derby boss Philip Cocu is looking forward to another game in front of their home fans at Pride Park.

Cocu said, "The support of the fans makes a difference, the players enjoy playing at Pride Park, they enjoy playing in front of their own fans and the influence they have on the opponent is big.

"I'm looking forward to playing another game at Pride Park". 

Huddersfield boss expects a tough task against Derby and says that he is surprised they are where they are in the table. 

"They've got some really good attacking players, if you look at their squad and the quality of their players should be in a higher position in the league than they are, but have got very good home form".