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The Preview: Birmingham v Derby County

Posted: Fri 31 Jan 2014
Author: bcfc.com
Image by: Pete Stanley

bcfc.com previews Saturday's Sky Bet Championship game against the Rams at St. Andrew's (3pm kick-off).

Assistant manager Terry McDermott on Tuesday night's defeat to Leicester City...
"We were well-beaten. But it’s no real shame because Leicester are the best team in the league. They gave us a bit of a run-around, but they’ve built that team over three or four years and spent a lot of money which helps, because money buys you better players whereas we’re just building a team moment. We’ve still got a lot of good players here and we’ve got to remember that."

McDermott on new signings Aaron Martin and Emyr Huws... 
"Aaron is very, very fit but he hasn’t played many games, so it depends what Lee (Clark) wants to do with him tomorrow. They both looked quality in the training session yesterday and very comfortable on the ball which is what you need at this level. Emyr is passing midfielder who wants to get on the ball all the time. He’s got a sweet left foot and he’s going to be an asset."

McDermott's take on the Derby game...
"It’s a tough game tomorrow but we’re capable of getting a result if the players play well on the day. We will have a few new faces and it will be difficult to gel straightaway, but we want to try and get three points because we don’t want to get sucked into a relegation battle."

McDermott on Derby's style of play...
"They're quite similar to Leicester in that they're a passing team with a lot of quality players. But we’ve shown that we’re capable of playing against teams like that. We played ever so well at their place earlier in the season and got a 1-1 draw. We’re under no illusions how difficult it will be. We’ve got start winning home games, because we’ve only won two all season and we’ve got to put it right."

Derby boss Steve McClaren's thoughts on the game...
"Saturday is a big, big game for us. We have to make sure we are ruthless and take advantage of what we’ve done this week already. Birmingham will be tough opponents, we saw that earlier in the season and Lee Clark is doing a good job at St. Andrew's. I know circumstances have been a bit difficult for him but he’s doing really well and they are a dangerous team, especially at home. We’ve been scoring a few late goals and I think a sign of a successful team is when you can make things happen in the last ten minutes. We kept knocking and knocking on the door against Yeovil and we eventually we ground them down and I think that’s what it is down to, sheer pressure. I think having a bench that can make a difference is hugely important too and it has worked for us so far.”

Blues team news...
New signings Emyr Huws and Aaron Martin are expected to go straight into the matchday squad. Mitch Hancox is set to miss the Rams game as he continues his recovery from an ankle injury. Captain Paul Robinson sits the game out as he completes his two-match suspension. Matt Green (knee), Jonathan Spector (thigh), David Murphy (knee), Akwasi Asante (hamstring) and Neal Eardley (knee) remain out.

Betting...
If you want to place a bet on the game, use Sky Bet and they will give a share of the revenue back to Blues. Plus sign-up now and get a free matched bet up to £30. Just click here. Looking to Saturday's game at St. Andrew's, a Blues win is priced 11/5, the draw at 12/5 and a Derby victory at 6/5. 

Tickets...
This match is a Grade A fixture with prices starting at £10 for U13s, £15 for 13-18s, £20 for seniors or students and £26 for adults. Click here for more details. 

Cash turnstiles...
There will be six cash turnstiles in operation for Blues fans on the day Kop & Tilton (Entrances 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7). 

Stat pack...
- Derby have not kept a clean sheet in any of their last 23 league meetings with Blues; a run that goes back to March 1977.
- Blues are unbeaten in five home league meetings with the Rams (W3 D2).
- The sides have met 110 times in the league and cup. Blues have won 39 of those matches, 31 have been drawn and Derby have won 40.
- The highest scoring game between the sides was a 5-5 draw in a Division Two fixture at St. Andrew's in April 1966.
- Derby's last win at St. Andrew's was a 4-1 success in November 1995 in a Football League Division One fixture.