Six points from five Championship games, with just one defeat, it's been a low key start for Derby County under new boss Philip Cocu. However, after all the drama of the Play-Off victory over Leeds United, Spygate, defeat to Aston Villa at Wembley, and then Frank Lampard's departure for Chelsea, low-key might not be a bad thing.

The Rams' opening day win over Huddersfield Town remains their only league success this term while they were dumped out of the Carabao Cup in midweek by arch-rivals Nottingham Forest. Since that win over The Terriers, Cocu's side have been held at home by Swansea City and West Bromwich Albion, drawn away at Stoke City and been beaten at Pride Park by Bristol City.

In terms of player movement, the addition of Krystian Bielik from Arsenal appears to have been an inspired move with the Pole impressing at the heart of defence thus far. Matt Clarke [Brighton], Ben Hamer [Huddersfield], Jamie Paterson [Bristol City], and Kieran Dowell [Everton] were also added on loan deals as the likes of Alex Pearce, Craig Bryson, Bradley Johnson, and Dave Nugent departed.


Phillip Cocu arrives in the East Midlands with a CV to match anyone who has taken charge in the second tier. The cultured midfielder made 773 professional appearances, netting 151 goals, over a 20 year career. He won four Dutch titles as well as two Dutch Cups and two Dutch Super Cups with PSV. At Barcelona he added a La Liga title and scored twice as Holland finished fourth at the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

After retiring in 2008, Cocu spent five years as Head Coach back at Eindhoven, ending his time there with a 65 per cent win rate, three Eredivisie titles, a Dutch Cup, and two Dutch Super Cups. He left in the summer of 2018, enduring an unsuccessful four-month spell in Turkey with Fenerbache, before arriving at Derby in July.


Aside from Mads Bech Sorensen, Thomas Frank has a fully fit squad to pick from. New signing Nikos Karelis is available after his international clearance was approved.

For The Rams, former Bee Florian Jozefzoon has been ruled out of the game while Scott Malone is touch and go. Duane Holmes came through 90 minutes against Forest in his first appearance of the season and is available.



🆚 Hot off the Press: Chris Watson of the Derby Telegraph previews The Rams

⚖ Ref Watch: David Webb will take charge on Saturday

🚆 Travel Guide: Rail Strike may affect travel time to Griffin Park tomorrow



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