Derby match preview

Barclays Premier League
Boleyn Ground
Saturday 19 April
Referee: Steve Tanner

WHUTV - Pre-match press conference and live commentary to come
WESTHAM.WAP.COM - All the news, on the move


* West Ham United, tenth in the Barclays Premier League, welcome already relegated Derby County looking to get back to winning ways and preserve their long-standing hold on a position in the top half of the table.

* A win would keep United at least three points clear of Tottenham Hotspur in eleventh with just three fixtures remaining. Of those final games, two are at home (Newcastle United, 26 April and Aston Villa, 11 May) and one is away (Manchester United, 3 May).

* George McCartney is in line to make his 50th consecutive appearance in all club competitions dating back to the 2-1 win at Blackburn Rovers on 17 March 2007.

* At least two wins from the final four games would take West Ham United to the 50-point mark in the top flight - something the club has only managed seven times in the previous 14 seasons since 1992/93.

* West Ham United have been in the top half of the table for all but one week since the middle of November.

* The last time West Ham United finished a top-flight campaign with a positive goal difference was the 1985/86 season (+34). The club is currently -6.

* West Ham United have not won the last two meetings between the clubs at the Boleyn Ground - both came in the Championship. A 2-1 defeat in the 2004/05 campaign was preceded by a 0-0 draw in the 2003/04 season.

* The last home win was a 4-0 top-flight success on 26 December 2001 with goals from Sebastien Schemmel, Paolo Di Canio, Trevor Sinclair and Jermain Defoe, with Derby having Benito Carbone sent off on 53 minutes.

Last match

* Alan Curbishley's men lost 1-0 at Bolton Wanderers in their last outing, with a solitary strike from Kevin Davies on 47 minutes separating the sides at the Reebok Stadium.

Bolton Wanderers 1-0 West Ham United (12 April): Green, Spector, Upson, Ferdinand (Pantsil 4), McCartney, Parker, Collison (Cole 50), Mullins, Ashton, Zamora (Sears 66), Boa Morte.
Subs not used: Walker, Tomkins.
Goal: Davies 47

Derby County 0-6 Aston Villa (12 April): Carroll, Todd (Earnshaw 54), Moore (Leacock 54), Stubbs, Lewis, Mears, Ghaly, Savage, Jones (McEveley 59), Villa, Miller.
Subs not used: Price, Feilhaber.
Goals: Young 25, Carew 26, Petrov 36, Barry 58, Agbonlahor 76, Harewood 85

* Matthew Upson may continue after coming through 90 minutes for the first time since 5 March in a physical encounter against Bolton. Anton Ferdinand is expected to miss out with a hamstring injury suffered early in that contest but he could be back for Newcastle United on 26 April.

* Jonathan Spector moved to the centre after Ferdinand's substitution having replaced Lucas Neill in the starting lineup but also felt the effects of a competitive contest at the Reebok Stadium with a hip problem. Club captain Neill missed out with a twisted ankle but could be in the back four against Derby. James Tomkins is also in contention for his first start at home, as are fellow youth-team graduates Jack Collison and Freddie Sears.

* Mark Noble and Freddie Ljungberg have both trained all week after recovering from hamstring injuries that caused them to miss the last two fixtures.

* Julien Faubert played 45 minutes for the reserves in a 2-1 win against Derby's second string on 9 April. He is fit again after calf muscle trouble and could play before the end of the season, having not figured since 1 March. Matthew Etherington, after his abdominal problems that have kept him out since 9 February, is also on the comeback trail but his return is not yet known.

* With regard to long-termers James Collins (knee), Danny Gabbidon (abdominal), Calum Davenport (neck), Nigel Quashie (foot), Lee Bowyer (groin), Kieron Dyer (double broken leg) and Craig Bellamy (abdominal), all are said to be making progress. 

* Bellamy, like the other six, is not likely to return this campaign as he looks to pre-season while Welsh international team-mate Collins is back at the training ground and stepping up his rehabilitation from his cruciate ligament injury after a positive surgeon's report.

* Derby could have Mile Sterjovski (achilles), Marc Edworthy (rib) fit again but are without long-term victims Danny Mills, Claude Davis and Giles Barnes.

* Derby, on eleven points, need to get five more to avoid finishing with lowest Premier League points total. Sunderland finished with 15 in the 2005/06 campaign.


* After 34 games last season, West Ham United were five points from safety and had just 29 points compared to the 44 they have achieved from the same number of matches this campaign.

* West Ham United and Derby last met at Pride Park on 10 November 2007 in a convincing 5-0 victory for the away side - equalling the club's all-time winning margin for a top-flight away fixture, a 6-1 success at Manchester City in September 1962.

* Lee Bowyer hit the first-half opener with a close-range shot and his second in the second half came after he provided an assist for Matthew Etherington and Jonathan Spector had made it three with a sharp strike that went in off Derby's Eddie Lewis. Nolberto Solano confirmed the rout when he struck a perfect free-kick into the corner of the net.

* The lineups were:

Derby County: Bywater, Mears, Moore, Edworthy, Griffin, Barnes, Oakley, Pearson, Teale (Howard 52 ), Miller (Fagan 75), Lewis (Earnshaw 58)
Subs not used: McEveley, Jones

West Ham United: Green, Neill, Gabbidon, Upson, McCartney (Pantsil 14), Solano, Spector, Bowyer (Collins 72), Etherington, Cole, Boa Morte
Subs not used: Richard Wright, Ljungberg, Camara

* McCartney has now made 40 appearances this season in all competitions. He has not missed a match since sitting out the 4-3 home defeat by Tottenham Hotspur on 4 March 2007 - an unbroken run of 49 games.

* McCartney is the only West Ham United player who has featured in every league and cup game to date, starting in each one.

* In terms of the Premier League, only Green has played every minute of the 34 matches.

* Carlton Cole, on nine cautions for the season, is no longer under the threat of a two-match ban as suspensions for ten yellow cards stopped taking effect after the second Sunday in April - which comes with the trip to Bolton.

* No Derby player has appeared in every top-flight game this season.

* Ashton, with eight goals, seven in the league, is the club's leading scorer. Kenny Miller, with five goals, three in the league, is Derby's top marksman. Matthew Oakley and Emanuel Villa have also scored three league goals each.

* Derby goalkeeper Roy Carroll played 31 league games for West Ham United between summer 2005 and summer 2007. Club-mate Stephen Bywater, another former United player, is on loan at Ipswich Town. Full-back Tyrone Mears spent last season at the Boleyn Ground, playing five league matches.

* West Ham United will next be in action on Saturday 26 April when Newcastle United arrive at the Boleyn Ground. Derby play host to Arsenal on Monday 28 April.

Last six league meetings

10 November 2007 - Derby County 0-5 West Ham United
23 January 2005 - West Ham United 1-2 Derby County
29 September 2004 - Derby County 1-1 West Ham United
10 April 2004 - West Ham United 0-0 Derby Country
4 October 2003 - Derby County 0-1 West Ham United
26 December 2001 - West Ham United 4-0 Derby County

All-time record versus Derby: W 25 D 25 L 23

General information

Tickets: This match is SOLD OUT. For general ticket information, click here. For details of getting to the Boleyn Ground, click here

Weather: The forecast is for rain and a chilly afternoon. The temperature is set to peak around the 8C mark.