As a heatwave continues to wreak havoc across England, the Sky Bet Championship kicks off a new season as Derby visit Reading.
This also marks Frank Lampard’s managerial bow in charge of Derby whilst Reading look to put the disaster of last season behind them.
Reading could hand new signing, Sam Baldock a debut, having just signed from Brighton & Hove Albion on Monday.
Defender, Liam Moore meanwhile could sit this game out after handing in a transfer request.
Derby have a full squad available with Tom Huddlestone the only possible doubt with a groin injury.
- Reading have won just two of their last seven meetings against Derby with both coming away at Pride Park.
- Their last home win over the Rams came on final day of 2010-11 season when they ran out 2-1 winners.
- None of last five meetings have finished goalless (W1 D3 L1).
- Reading have taken two wins and losses apiece plus a draw from last five opening weekend games of a new season.
- Derby are unbeaten in their last five opening league games with four of those games being draws, including their last three.
Reading will definitely be a changed side under Paul Clement now that he has had all summer to get players used to his style.
Derby meanwhile seem as solid as ever as evidenced by scoring at least once in every pre season friendly.
I therefore am going to call this a draw, particularly given that this is how Derby seem to like to start seasons.
Prediction: Reading 1-1 Derby
Result: Reading 1-2 Derby