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Dec 29, 2020 at 5.30pm UK at St. Andrew's Stadium
BirminghamBirmingham City
DerbyDerby County
FT(HT: 0-3)
Bielik (15'), Shinnie (17' pen.), Kazim-Richards (26'), Knight (77')
Sibley (67')

Preview: Birmingham City vs. Derby County - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Tuesday's Championship clash between Birmingham City and Derby County, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Derby County face Birmingham City at St Andrew's on Tuesday evening looking to respond to their first Championship defeat under interim boss Wayne Rooney.

Meanwhile, Blues head into this fixture having recorded just one point from four matches, leaving the club in 17th position in the table.

Match preview

Derby County manager Wayne Rooney pictured in December 2020© Reuters

Playing with 10 men for much of their Boxing Day fixture with Preston North End, Rooney would have been delighted with the character shown by his side throughout the fixture at Pride Park.

However, conceding a 96th-minute winner left the Rams squad deflated, and they now face the challenge of bouncing back from losing their six-match unbeaten streak under Rooney.

Although the positives will be taken from 10 points being recorded from their last seven outings, it has not been enough to keep the club outside of the bottom three.

A trip to Birmingham represents an opportunity to get back on track, but Rooney will acknowledge that suffering a second successive defeat ahead of the trip to Sheffield Wednesday would be a huge blow.

Nevertheless, Derby have performed better away from home of late, and the England legend may feel comfortable in reverting to the mindset that led to four points coming from fixtures at Millwall and Brentford.

Birmingham boss Aitor Karanka has been under pressure to play with more attacking intent with his team continuing to struggle for goals in the second tier.

While victories have recently been recorded at Bristol City and Reading, a four-match winless streak has put the Spaniard in a position where he will still have doubts about the change in mentality.

A goalless draw at Nottingham Forest on Boxing Day was a step in the right direction, but the West Midlands outfit only remain seven points above the relegation zone.

Although getting the better of Derby would ease any fears regarding a fight at the wrong end of the table, Karanka will again feel that avoiding defeat against a rival should be at the top of his priority list.

Birmingham City Championship form: WWLLLD

Derby County Championship form: DWDDWL

Team News

Birmingham City manager Aitor Karanka pictured on October 4, 2020© Reuters

Karanka is unlikely to make many alterations to the Birmingham XI which started the game at the City Ground.

Jon Toral is in line to replace recent arrival Alen Halilovic, who suffered a groin injury on his first Blues start at the weekend.

Derby will be without Martyn Waghorn after the forward was sent off against Preston.

Having played for 70 minutes with 10 men, Rooney could freshen up his side with the introduction of Duane Holmes and Max Bird.

Birmingham City possible starting lineup:
Etheridge; Colin, Roberts, Dean, Friend; Clayton, Sunjic; Sanchez, Toral, Bela; Hogan

Derby County possible starting lineup:
Marshall; Byrne, Wisdom, Clarke, Buchanan; Bird, Bielik, Shinnie; Holmes, Kazim-Richards, Jozwiak

SM words green background

We say: Birmingham City 1-1 Derby County

With both teams struggling in the final third, we would be very surprised to see many goals in this game. While Karanka and Rooney may place more focus on getting on the scoresheet, this could still end in a low-scoring share of the spoils.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home/Away:curl

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Derby County manager Wayne Rooney pictured in December 2020
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