Derby vs West Brom preview: Championship clash live on Sky Sports Football
Watch live on Sky Sports Football from 12pm on Saturday; Kick-off 12.30pm.
Last Updated: 24/08/19 11:44am
Derby face West Brom in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday. Coverage gets underway live on Sky Sports Football from 12pm, while kick-off is at 12.30pm.
Duane Holmes is closing in on a Derby return but will not be ready on Saturday. The midfielder is yet to figure this season while he recovers from a thigh injury he picked up on international duty with the United States in the summer.
Jack Marriott could be ready to start after coming off the bench to score in the 2-1 defeat to Bristol City following a thigh injury. Andre Wisdom (knee), Craig Forsyth (knee) and Jayden Bogle (ankle) all remain out.
Striker Hal Robson-Kanu is missing for West Brom with a back injury. Defender Ahmed Hegazi is still recovering from ankle surgery and is expected to be sidelined for another month.
Kenneth Zohore is pushing to start after coming off the bench to rescue a point in Wednesday's 1-1 draw with Reading. Grady Diangana and Charlie Austin are now fully fit for Slaven Bilic's side.
Derby lost their first game under Phillip Cocu in midweek as they were beaten by Bristol City at Pride Park. It leaves them on five points from four games so far this season, and without a win in the Championship since the opening weekend.
West Brom, meanwhile, have two wins and two draws thus far, having scored a late penalty against Reading in midweek to draw 1-1 at The Hawthorns. They head into the weekend sixth in the table, while Derby are 14th.
Derby boss Phillip Cocu: "We are still not on the top of our game because some players need to fit in. An example is Krystian Bielik. He is playing now and has to get to know how we want to play and his team-mates too. It's the same for Jamie Paterson as well. The pieces of the puzzle have to come together. We have an idea of how we want to play but it has to develop and especially if you want to play by being dominant with the ball.
"The pieces have to fit together because against defensive teams it is not easy and the understanding has to be really good. We will keep on working over the next couple of weeks and months on this."
West Brom boss Slaven Bilic: "[Friday] is the day - two days after the game - when you feel most of the fatigue. They felt good [on Thursday], which was normal, they were still hyped from the gam.
"They're probably going to be a bit flat in the training session [on Friday], which we're expecting. Hopefully, we don't have any issues, injury-wise."
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Phillip Cocu hit with Championship reality, Jack Butland facing the drop at Stoke and managing expectations at Huddersfield...
Phillip Cocu must have thought he had cracked the Championship after Derby's opening-day win at Huddersfield, a side who had just been relegated from the Premier League.
But it hasn't been quite so smooth sailing since. A Martyn Waghorn penalty miss cost them in a goalless draw at home to Swansea, while they then drew 2-2 at Stoke and lost 2-1 at home to Bristol City.
Derby have won their last three matches against West Bromwich Albion in all competitions, including both Championship meetings last campaign.
West Brom are winless in their last three away league meetings against Derby (W0 D1 L2) since winning 1-0 under Gary Megson in August 2003.
Since winning four consecutive home Championship games - scoring 15 goals across those wins - Derby are winless in three home Championship games (including play-offs), drawing one, losing two and scoring only once.
West Brom (P4 W2 D2 L0) are unbeaten in their opening four league games of a season for the first time since 2009-10, when they were promoted to the Premier League.
Since the start of last season (inc. play-offs), no current Championship side has scored more goals from outside the box than Derby County (15).
West Brom striker Charlie Austin has scored five goals in six Championship (exc. play-offs) appearances against Derby - only versus Barnsley (6) has he bagged more in the second tier.
Phillip Cocu will be learning what the Championship is all about now, having suffered his first Derby defeat at home to Bristol City in midweek.
Slaven Bilic, meanwhile, has enjoyed a solid start to life in charge at West Brom, although there are still some question marks over whether they have replaced the firepower they had upfront last season. I think they'll have enough to beat Derby, though.
David Prutton predicts: 1-2 (9/1 with Sky Bet)