Our prediction for this Championship match:
Watford and Derby County take on each other at Vicarage Road in the opening match of day 31. The Hornets aim to build on back-to-back wins over Watford (6-0) and Preston (1-0), and seeing that a triumph over Derby could see them climb to automatic promotion places, we are positive that the hosts will adopt an attack-minded approach in Friday’s clash. All Dele-Bashiru, Foster, and Kabasele remain in the recovery room, while Isaac Success is a major doubt.
The Rams, on the other hand, quickly bounced back from a heavy 3-0 loss to Rotherham, with the team beating both Middlesbrough and Wycombe in the previous two league fixtures. Even though Derby County have been producing fine displays under new boss Wayne Rooney, we are tempted to put our money on Watford, who are eyeing their fourth consecutive clean sheet. The likes of Bielik, Davies, and Lawrence are sidelined with injuries for the visitors.
Highlighted Player (Andre Gray):
Wolverhampton-born striker Andre Gray is a product of the Shrewsberry Town youth academy who hit the limelight during his two loan spell with Luton Town. A no-nonsense forward endured a difficult childhood which left him with a four-inch scar on his left cheek after he got stabbed in the face in a gang-related incident back in 2011.
Fortunately, Andre Grey was pulled out of the gang lifestyle by his mother and close friends and focused on his football career. Having scored 57 goals in 111 appearances with The Hatters, Gray was prized away by Brentford in a club-record deal at the time. Just a season later Gray moved to Burnley where he hit 23 goals in 41 Championship appearances to emerge as a vital cog in his club’s Premier League push in 2014/15. After nine goals in 32 top-flight appearances with he Clarets, Gray was transferred to Watford for yet another club-record fee.
The Englishman’s prolific goalscoring record in the Football League was brought to a halt, however, with Gray scoring just five goals in 31 Premier League appearances during the 2017/18 season.
Highlighted Team (Derby):
Derby County is one of the 12 founder members of the Football League. However, nowadays the Rams compete in the Championship and they play their home matches at Pride Park Stadium. Derby County have won the two trophies in the English top flight (1971/1972, 1974/1975), with the team lifting the FA Cup trophy just after the World War II (1946).
Derby’s main rivals are Nottingham Forest, Leicester City and Leeds United, but the rivalry between Forest and Derby is regarded as the biggest one.
The two teams take on each other in the East Midlands derby. The colour of Derby’s shirts is white, whilst their shorts are black. It has to be noted that the club was founded in 1884 by William Morley. The Rams competed in the European competitions four times, but they did not record a notable result in the European Cups. The club’s chairman is Mel Morris.