Meet the opposition: Derby
As Swansea City get set for a trip to Derby County on Saturday, we take a closer look at the men from the Pride Park.
What’s their story?
Derby have been a Championship side since suffering relegation from the Premier League under Paul Jewell with a record low points tally of 11 in the 2007-08 season.
They have since reached play-offs three times, most recently last season when lost 2-1 on aggregate to Fulham in the semi-finals.
Winners of the first FA Cup after World War II back in 1946, they have also been crowned champions of English football on two occasions – in 1971-72 and again in 1974-75.
How’s their form?
Things are going pretty well. Derby have lost two of their last games in the Championship – at Stoke on Wednesday and against Aston Villa in their last home game – but they went six unbeaten in the league before that.
After a slow start to the season – they were beaten in two of their first three second-tier games – the Rams have picked up points against the likes of Norwich, Middlesbrough, West Brom and Sheffield United.
They also gave a fantastic account of themselves in the Carabao Cup, beating Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United on penalties before losing 3-2 to Chelsea in the next round.
Who’s the boss?
Frank Lampard. An English footballing great, Lampard is enjoying his first stint as a manager.
The former midfielder – who made 11 appearances for the Swans while on loan from West Ham in 1995-96 – played more than 600 Premier League games for the Hammers, Chelsea and Manchester City, scoring 177 goals in the process.
After a brief period as a pundit the former England international was appointed Derby manager in May, and is already earning plaudits for his possession-based football and faith in young players.
Who are the key men?
Derby have an experienced goalkeeper in ex-England man Scott Carson, who has played for the likes of Liverpool, Aston Villa and West Brom in the Premier League.
In defence, Republic of Ireland international Richard Keogh is yet to miss a league game for the Rams this season while Canadian centre-back Fikayo Tomori, who turns 21 this month, has impressed while on loan from Chelsea.
In midfield, Lampard has Welsh internationals Tom Lawrence and Harry Wilson at his disposal, but Joe Ledley is likely to miss out this weekend with injury.
Bradley Johnson will also be absent through suspension, but 19-year-old Mason Mount, on loan from Chelsea, should feature.
Seven-goal leading scorer Jack Marriott and veteran forward David Nugent have battled it out for a starting spot up front this season, scoring seven goals between them.
Wilson has netted six goals, while Mount has five.