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Derby County vs Bolton Wanderers: Preview & Predictions

The Mighty Wanderers travel to the Ipro Stadium secure in the knowledge that they outplayed Liverpool in their fourth round FA Cup tie, and that three points from Derby will help to heal all wounds.

Michael Steele/Getty Images

Derby County sit second in the Sky Bet Championship table on 54 points, confident that with seventeen matches left a playoff spot is all but assured, and automatic promotion is a realistic goal.  Bolton Wanderers come in fourteenth in the table with 34 points.  A playoff spot is eleven points away.  It's not an unimaginable goal, but if it is to be attained, the push must start now.

Neil Lennon does not have his full squad available, not by any means, but he does have a lot more depth than he did against Liverpool on Wednesday.  Adam Le Fondre, Barry Bannan, Filip Twardzik, Rochinha, and Simeon Slavchev will all be options.  Matt Mills and Craig Davies will have late fitness tests.  Darren Pratley is out with a hamstring injury, as is Emile Heskey.  We all know Neil Danns is suspended following his two yellow cards on Wednesday. Here is what I will be looking for on the Bolton team sheet:

Andy Lonergan

Dorian Dervite Matt Mills David Wheater Tim Ream

Liam Feeney Josh Vela Barry Bannan Zach Clough

Adam Le Fondre Eidur Gudjohnsen

It's a very attacking side, I know, but Lennon is a brave man, and confidence will be high after the performance against Liverpool.  Last time we were in this situation there was a huge letdown against Rotherham United, but I think things will be different this time.  I'm saying it's a 2-2 draw, with Wanderers looking the better side.