Derby County v Stoke preview

Date published: Monday 24th August 2015 1:50

Derby County v Stoke preview

On-loan striker Ryan Noble has been refused permission to feature for Derby.
Rams boss Nigel Clough had hoped to be able to hand the forward his first start since rejoining the club but Sunderland do not want him cup-tied. Noble, who also had a temporary stint at Pride Park in 2010, was a second-half substitute in the goalless league draw at Burnley last weekend.
With leading scorer Theo Robinson an injury doubt and Steven Davies not ready to start having only recently resumed action for the reserves after three months out with a skull fracture, manager Nigel Clough is hoping Sunderland will allow the 20-year-old striker to play in the fourth-round tie on Saturday.
“We are still waiting for clearance. We hope it is a positive answer because Ryan has a real chance of playing,” said Clough. “It will be Friday before Theo will train, if he does at all. With a knock, it is about how a player reacts and recovers and he has not recovered brilliantly in the first few days. But it is only a knock, not a pull or strain.
“After such a long time out, I’m not quite sure Steve is ready yet. He didn’t head it too many times in his last game on Tuesday night and the one time he did head it, his protective mask broke and he had to come off, so we could do with Ryan being eligible.”
Midfielder James Bailey has trained this week after he felt unwell at Burnley and had to be replaced by the fit-again Jeff Hendrick.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis has virtually a full squad to choose from.
Defender Andy Wilkinson and winger Ryan Shotton are fit again after recent injury problems, with long-term absentee Mamady Sidibe (knee) the only player who will not be available for the Potters.
Pulis, who made six changes for the 3-1 third-round victory at Gillingham, says he will pick a “strong” team for the clash at Pride Park.
Stoke (from): Sorensen, Begovic, Wilkinson, Huth, Shawcross, Wilson, Pennant, Delap, Palacios, Etherington, Crouch, Walters, Shotton, Upson, Diao, Jones, Whitehead, Whelan, Woodgate, Fuller, Higginbotham, Jerome.

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