Championship: In-form Tom Ince key for Derby against Wolves
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | October 16, 2015
Derby County v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Sunday, October 18th
Kick-off: 13:15 BST
Pride Park, Derby
Live on Sky Sports 1
Promotion hopefuls play at Pride Park
Derby County and Wolves were both on the cusp of the Championship play-offs before a ball was kicked this weekend, occupying seventh and ninth place respectively, so need three points from this Midlands derby to keep in touch.
Managerial novice Paul Clement takes on experienced coach Kenny Jackett at Pride Park, and the hosting Rams are odds-on 20/23 favourites with Coral for victory having put five past the Wanderers from Wolverhampton when last welcoming them to Pride Park.
Wolves are thus 7/2 outsiders, and last earned victory in Derby when the home team contained Andy Todd, Robbie Savage and Rob Hulse in its spine. A repeat of that 3-2 Wanderers win from their promotion season under Mick McCarthy in April 2009 is long shot at 40/1, though.
Ince has rediscovered scoring touch
County can certainly count on in-form winger Tom Ince for this Midlands match between East and West. He has two in three career appearances against Wanderers, and netted in each of his last three games going into this encounter. Ince is thus a superb 7/4 to net for the fourth match running.
If previous form is anything to go by, Derby head coach Clement should pick Darren Bent over Chris Martin to lead the Rams’ line, as the Scotland striker has never scored against Wolves. Ex-England international Bent, meanwhile, has five in his last 10 when previous paired with the Wolverhampton outfit, so is a fab 4/1 price to break the deadlock.
Afobe and ALF are Wolves attack
Visitors Wolves are no less predictable in their forward threats. Benik Afobe has six in a dozen matches this term to date, and his anytime odds of 15/8 thus look well worth investing it. With Nouha Dicko out long-term, it’s Adam Le Fondre who is Jackett’s alternative up top, though he’s never netted against Derby. Odds of 8/1 say he can change that and score last.
Punters should also note the recent goals from deep-lying Scottish midfielder Kevin McDonald, with two in three. A 5/1 anytime scorer price cannot be ignored, especially if Jackett is encouraging him to get forward and chip in more.
Coral’s top tip: In-form Ince is the one to back at 7/4 anytime on home turf.