FA Cup: Leicester City v Derby County preview


Leicester City v Derby County preview

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri has a selection dilemma ahead of Wednesday's FA Cup fourth-round replay with Derby County at the King Power Stadium.


At the weekend, the Premier League champions travel to Swansea City - the team directly below them in the table - but more immediately they face Steve McClaren's Championship promotion hopefuls.

The Italian must now decide whether to make changes to his side with Sunday's crucial clash at the Liberty Stadium looming large, possibly sacrificing a place in the fifth round and the chance to build some much-needed momentum.

"Derby are a big team and move the ball very well, it will be tough," said Ranieri. "I have to protect some players who need to recover and rest. Also, I want to give the opportunity to the other players."

Derby boss McClaren, meanwhile, is hopeful Craig Bryson and Bradley Johnson will both be fit to face the Foxes after the midfield duo sustained hip and leg injuries respectively in Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Newcastle United.

"Craig has had had a few problems with his hip," said McClaren. "We're hoping it will settle down. He wants to play tomorrow night and we are a bit short in that area. We will have to assess him in the morning and we won't take any risks.

"He [Johnson] was coming off anyway, because we needed to change the game. A couple of minutes afterwards, he was OK. He's trained for the past two days and will be fine."

And frontman David Nugent is also in with a chance to featuring against his former club.

"He has come through two days training and did everything today," said McClaren. "We will have a look tomorrow and see if he has had any reaction."

With Ranieri set to make changes, the likes of Ben Chilwell, Andy King, Marc Albrighton, Demarai Gray and Daniel Amartey could all be recalled.

Recent signing Molla Wague is ineligible having joined the club after the original tie, while strikers Islam Slimani (groin) and Leonardo Ulloa (thigh) are still nursing injuries.


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