Championship side Derby County host Premier League champions Leicester City in an East Midlands derby in the fourth round of the FA Cup tonight (7.55pm kick-off).

Steve McClaren’s Rams came from behind to beat top-flight outfit West Brom 2-1 in the last round, and they have also embarked on a fine run of form in the league, having won ten and drawn three of their 16 league matches since McClaren replaced Nigel Pearson as manager back in October.

Thus, the Rams will be very tricky to beat at the iPro Stadium tonight, yet Claudio Ranieri’s Foxes came through a testing encounter in the last round by beating fellow Premier League side Everton 2-1 at Goodison Park.

That was their first domestic away win of the season for the league champions, but back-to-back 3-0 defeats are far from ideal preparation going into tonight’s clash.

In what is the first fixture of the fourth round weekend, it is sure to be an intriguing encounter between these two East Midlands rivals, and we have thus analysed the THREE key battles that could determine the outcome at the iPro this evening…

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