Derby County vs Brentford preview: Bees look to close in on the top two
(Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

The Rams will be looking to bounce back from their defeat in mid-week at the hands of West Bromwich Albion as Phillip Cocu and his players are still within touching distance of the play-off places.

Brentford, on the other hand, will look to extend their winning run seven games as they look to carry on their momentum and keep West Brom and Leeds United on their toes. 

  • Key Battle

The key battle in this game will be Said Benrahma vs Jayden Bogle.

The Algerian winger Benrahma has been key for the Bees this season, scoring 15 goals from the left-hand side. 

Derby County full-back Bogle has been questioned recently over his defensive abilities and he will once again come up against a tricky opponent. On the flip-side, Bogle's marauding runs could cause Brentford issues if he is not tracked.

His pace and trickery, which are similar to that of a winger, has helped him contribute to a fair amount of goals for the Rams over the past couple of seasons.

  • Previous Meeting

The previous meeting will be one that Cocu and Derby will not want to remember, as they were trounced at Griffin Park.

The game was over by half time as two quick fire goals from Bryan Mbeumo and Ollie Watkins put the Bees 2-0 up after only 18 minutes.

Derby had an uphill task from there and they were soon put to bed as Watkins grabbed another goal right on the stroke of half time, leaving the second half to be just a formality.

  • Team News

Derby look to be without Duane Holmes for this clash, he went off against West From in the first-half through injury. Tom Lawrence will be able to be called upon again after serving his three-match ban.

The Rams however, will be without Martyn Waghorn, as he serves the second game of a three match ban after seeing red against Nottingham Forest, leaving Derby short in the wide areas. 

Henrik Dalsgaard and Emiliano Marcondes could be called upon by Thomas Frank for this game which would mean two unfortunate casualties dropping to the bench. 

  • Manager's Thoughts

Derby manager Phillip Cocu maintains the fact they are only focusing on themselves:

”We don’t have the luxury of thinking about other games, rivals or anything else" Cocu said to the Derby County website.

“Many teams are fighting for the sixth place in the table, to get into a play-off spot, so we know what we have to do on Saturday. 

“That’s the only focus and job we have. Don’t think about anything else; we just focus on the game and try to get a good result.

Cocu added: “It’s a challenge again for us and we will try to get a good result against one of the top teams - and the next opportunity is Saturday.”