After being scared off by Coventry, Stoke return after extended break to play Derby
It’s Stoke’s first game in what feels like an eternity on Thursday night, against a Derby side who only played on Monday night.
Derby won that game helped by a shocking bit of defending by WBA. That was Derby’s 6th win of the season, Combine that with the 10 draws they’ve had, they would be 19th in the league if not for the financial situation they are in resulting in 21 point deduction this season.
Stoke & Derby have both lost 7 times this season, Stoke have turned more of those draws into wins meaning a win over Derby could see the Potters regain their spot in the play off places, with a few games in hand on others around them.
How have we faired in previous meetings.
Thursdays fixture will be the 139th meeting between the two sides
Stoke wins 43
Derby wins 54
The last meeting
The last meeting between the sides was back in September at Pride Park. Stoke started the game as if it was going to be a walk over and found themselves 2-0 down at half time having just 3 shots in the first 45mins compared to Derby’s 9 of which a majority were on target.
Throughout the game Stoke controlled the possession but did nothing with it till the second half, a half Stoke dominated all aspects but could only score the once through Ex Derby player Tom Ince. Stoke lost the game 2-1
The last game at the bet365 Stadium was a better affair in terms of the result anyway. The game wasn’t much to write home about but a goal midway through the second half from Jacob Brown gave the Potters a 1-0 win.
Form (last 4 games)
Bristol City 1-0 Stoke
Stoke 0-1 Blackburn
QPR 0-2 Stoke
Stoke 0-0 Middlesbrough
Derby 1-2 QPR
Bristol City 1-0 Derby
Derby 1-0 Blackpool
Derby 1-0 WBA
Derby have won the last two games, but only 4 of the last 15. Saying that, in the last five weeks, Derby have beaten top of the league Bournemouth and West Brom, plus drawn with 2nd placed Fulham.
This is not going to be an easy game.
Who’s the threat
Stoke linked midfielder Tom Lawrence is the stand out name in the Derby squad, Curtis Davies always seems to be a thorn in Stoke’s side whether he just defends better than the norm against us or pops up with a goal from nowhere.
How could Stoke set up for the game.
This could be an hard one to predict, Stoke have numerous players out injured and have had a covid outbreak resulting in The last two games being postponed. How many of those that tested positive were ill, how many have not fully recovered. Team announcement come 18:45 on Thursday could be an eye opener though O’Neill has said they all returned to training on Sunday with no noticeable effects.
What is your score Prediction?