Derby County host Birmingham City this weekend with manager Phillip Cocu searching for his first home victory since taking over at Pride Park in the summer.

The Rams head into the Championship clash having dominated headlines this week.

Both Tom Lawrence and Mason Bennett let themselves and the club down following an off-field incident reported in The Telegraph.

(Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images).

The club have since issued an official statement condoning their actions.

Richard Keogh, meanwhile, is now ruled out for the season with a knee injury.

Cocu has tough decisions to make, and here is how we believe Derby will line up.

 

Keogh’s injury will likely see summer signing Krystian Bielik drop into defence. The Pole has recently played in midfield, but he is also comfortable playing at centre-back.

Jayden Bogle is expected to return to the 18 after training again following his foot injury. It might be one game too soon to start, so Max Lowe will again feature at right-back.

Tom Huddlestone has been named Derby’s new captain and should start. Duane Holmes will add energy to the midfield, while Kieran Dowell could come back in.

Phillip Cocu’s main selection headache is the front three. Chris Martin came off the bench to score the equaliser in the 1-1 draw at Leeds United and he deserves a start.

(Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images).

But where does that leave Jack Marriott and Martyn Waghorn? The latter can play out wide right, but the former has really struggled this term upfront on his own.

Due to the midweek incident, Derby face Birmingham short on natural wide options. A toss-up between Florian Jozefzoon and Jamie Paterson should see the latter get the nod.

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