Derby County news: Sky Sports pundit issues prediction for Rams' clash with Middlesbrough

Sam Baldock celebrates after scoring the winner in Derby County's clash with Hull

Derby County managed to deliver the perfect response to their recent heartbreaking defeat to Peterborough United by securing a 1-0 victory over Hull City on Wednesday.

Wayne Rooney decided to hand debuts to Sam Baldock and Phil Jagielka in this particular clash after drafting in the duo earlier this week.

Baldock made an immediate impression for the Rams as he scored the winner at the MKM Stadium in the 57th minute.

As a result of this victory, Derby climbed up to 12th in the Championship standings.

With his side set to face Middlesbrough tomorrow, it will be intriguing to see whether Rooney is able to guide the Rams to another victory.

Boro manager Neil Warnock will be hoping that his side will be able to bounce back from their 3-2 defeat to Queens Park Rangers by producing an encouraging display against the Rams.

Whilst Derby defender Festy Ebosele is set to be available for this fixture, it remains to be seen whether Tom Lawrence will be fit enough to start after the winger suffered a minor groin problem in training on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Krystian Bielik is still on the road to recovery after picking up a serious knee injury in January.

Ahead of Saturday’s fixture, pundit David Prutton has admitted that he believes that both sides will have to settle for a point at Pride Park.

Speaking to Sky Sports, the former Southampton player said: “A big win for Derby in midweek as they edged past Hull City, with all the experience of Phil Jagielka at the back helping them over the line.

“Wayne Rooney is having to do what he can in the market, but it was a great response from what happened at Peterborough in the game before.

“Middlesbrough stumbled to defeat at home to QPR.

“Once they got level against 10 men you simply have to go on and win those types of games.

“Neil Warnock was seething, but has all the experience in the world and will put it behind him before Saturday.

“That being said, I think I’ll back a draw here.”

GIVEMESPORT’s Joshua Cole says…

Whilst Rooney will be under no illusion about just how difficult it will be to secure a positive result against Warnock’s side, Derby ought to be brimming with confidence heading into this fixture after their recent triumph.

If the Rams are to see off the challenge that Middlesbrough will pose, they may need to turn to Baldock for inspiration again.

As well as netting the winner against Hull, the forward managed to provide two key passes for his team-mates as he recorded a WhoScored match rating of 7.11.

Providing that he is able to replicate this display this weekend, Baldock could potentially help the Rams seal all three points in-front of their supporters.

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