The FA Cup fourth round weekend kicks off with an East Midlands derby as Premier League champions, Leicester City travel to Championship’s Derby County.
Derby’s David Nugent is unlikely to face his former club after struggling to overcome a knee injury. Steve McClaren will pleased to have midfield trio; Ikechi Anya, Jacob Butterfield and Bradley Johnson back after time on the sidelines. Forward, Nick Blackman is fit after recovering from injury and set to play a part in the match.
Leicester will be delighted to have Riyad Mahrez back from the African Cup of Nations early. Teammate, Islam Slimani is out after picking up an injury whilst on international duty. Defender, Daniel Amartey is still in Africa with Ghana. Wantaway striker, Leonardo Ulloa is out with a thigh issue.
Claudio Ranieri has some tough decisions to make given that his side has performed poorly, when away from home domestically in all competitions. With Mahrez back earlier than anticipated, does he go straight into the starting eleven or should he be on the substitute bench?
Jamie Vardy will see this match as an opportunity to try and get back to his best but faces Darren Bent, who has nine goals in his last ten FA Cup appearances. With Ulloa and Slimani out injured, the Englishman needs to step up and start netting if the Foxes are to get their hands on one trophy this season.
Derby however will have tough decisions to make because progress in the competition could derail their promotion campaign across in the Championship. For that reason, they will be glad to be at home tonight because since McClaren returned, they have gone unbeaten at the Ipro Stadium.
This match should be tight because both teams are in league action on Tuesday night. Both defences have been shaky on occasions this season so expect quite a few goals in the net with a tight score line come full time. Derby have however lost eight of their last nine meetings with Leicester in all competitions so will be underdogs tonight.
Prediction: Derby 1-2 Leicester
Result: Derby 2-2 Leicester