Q&A With Derby County

  • August 21, 2012 | By Chris Mann
  • URL Short URL: http://b-ac.es/73637

Bolton play host to Derby County on Tuesday night and we have spoken to a Rams supporter ahead of the game.

In what will be Wanderers' first home game outside the top flight since 2001, Nigel Clough will bring Derby to the Reebok Stadium for the first meeting between the two sides since January 2008, when a late Stelios Giannakopoulos goal gave Gary Megson's Bolton team a 1-0 victory.

Ahead of the match, we have spoken to triz from Derby County Mad, who shares his views on Clough, Derby's Championship struggles and where Bolton will finish the campaign.

Q: Derby have scored seven goals in their opening two games of the season, but have conceded the same number at the other end. What is going wrong at the back?

A: We have a new centre back pairing (Richard Keogh and Jake Buxton) that are getting used to playing together, but they seem to be gelling well - goals conceded aside.

We've lost a very good player in Jason Shackell to Burnley, but replaced him with Keogh, who was Coventry's Player of the Year last season. We've also lost our captain and talisman in Shaun Barker for a season and not replaced him.

Clough is happy to drop back and defend too early, aswell, and teams can come and punish us in the 2nd half. It has cost us dear so far.

Q: Last season's 12th-placed finish was Derby's best return to a campaign since they were relegated from the Premier League in 2008. What has stopped the club from mounting a promotion challenge in the four years since?

A: Paul Jewell spent our owner's money in our first season after the drop. Since then, they have attempted to bring the club inline with Financial Fair Play rules and make us self sustainable.

With other clubs spending big, we can't compete.

Q: Nigel Clough is now in his fourth full season in charge at Pride Park. What has he done for the club and is he still the right man for the job?

A: He has kept us in the Champianship when many wouldn't have. Our team's wages have dropped significantly and much dead wood has gone.

A lot of bosses have taken teams down in similar circumstances as the Rams in the past few years and I'm grateful that he's prevented the same with us. However, his tactical knowledge could be better and his man management is a bone of contention.

My thoughts are that he's working well under harsh constrictions, but we could do better.

Q: Which player(s) do you think can cause the most damage to Bolton when you visit the Reebok?

A: 17-year-old Will Hughes is the best player the Rams have seen for many a year. If we don't pick up at least £15million for this boy there'll be uproar. Beware!

Q: Which Bolton player(s) will the Rams have to keep quiet on Tuesday night?

A: Don't you have Tyrone Mears? Former players always score against us! Good player, but don't trust him.

Q: Do you think Derby will improve on last season's 12th-placed finish, or are you destined for another season in the bottom half?

A: I think we'll be bottom half. I believe Derby have improved, but so has the league. We'll be alright, but we won't worry the top six.

Q: Bolton have been widely tipped as potential title candidates this season. Where do you think the Wanderers will finish?

A: I think the Championship has improved this year so a top-two finish cannot be guaranteed, but a play-off place should be the least you expect.

Q: Finally, what do you think the final score will be when the two sides meet at the Reebok on Tuesday night?

A: Two away games in a row for the Rams and I can't see us taking any points in either. 2-0 to the Trotters.

Burnden Aces would like to thank triz for sharing his views ahead of Tuesday night's game at the Reebok.

You can read more answers from the Derby faithful by checking out our Q&A thread at Derby County Mad.

Sky Bet League One Standings

Pos Team Pld Pts
11 Ipswich Town 20 27
12 Cheltenham Town 19 27
13 Bolton Wanderers 20 26
14 Accrington Stanley 19 24
15 Charlton Athletic 20 23
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