Scott Malone comments on facing Leeds fans in Derby clash

Leeds fans show their support prior to the Sky Bet Championship Play-off semi final second leg match between Leeds United and Derby County at Elland Road on May 15, 2019 in Leeds, England.

Derby County will face Marcelo Bielsa's Leeds United for the first time since May's Championship play-off semi final.

Leeds fans show their support prior to the Sky Bet Championship Play-off semi final second leg match between Leeds United and Derby County at Elland Road on May 15, 2019 in Leeds, England.

Derby County defender Scott Malone has told the Derby Telegraph that he expects a vociferous atmosphere during Saturday’s Championship clash against Leeds United in front of an Elland Road crowd that will be baying for blood.

At 12.30pm this weekend, Leeds and Derby will go head to head for the first time since that bitter play-off clash back in May.

With the ‘spygate scandal’ fresh in the minds and a West Yorkshire rendition of an Oasis classic ringing out around a sold-out Elland Road five months ago, Derby stunned Leeds into silence with a famous 4-2 win which overturned a one-goal first-leg deficit.

 

Thanks to a narrow defeat to Aston Villa at Wembley, however, Derby are still a Championship club and the Pride Park faithful will be hoping that they are not Rams to the slaughter on their first return to Leeds this weekend.

Left-back Malone is certainly aware of the challenge facing his side against Marcelo Bielsa’s title-favourites – though he doesn’t think we will see a repeat of the jubilation of five months ago, even if Derby triumph again on Leeds soil.

“I don’t think we’d quite celebrate like that,” quipped the former Fulham and Wolves flyer.

Scott Malone of Derby County in action during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and Bristol City at Pride Park Stadium on August 20, 2019 in Derby, England.

“It adds a little bit of edge to the game but I think everyone is looking forward to it after what happened last year.

“It’s just how football is – of course there’s going to be a little more edge to the game being at their place as well after what happened last season.

“We’ve got to deal with that, because it will be noisy, they will want revenge for what happened and we’ve got to stand up to that like we did against Cardiff.”

Derby finished sixth in the Championship last season but they have won just one game out of seven since Phillip Cocu replaced Frank Lampard in the dugout, meaning Leeds are clear favourites ahead of the lunchtime kick-off this weekend.

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