The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP -

NEW­CAS­TLE weren’t out­stand­ing but took their chances to win at a ground where most teams will be lucky to come away with a point.

Derby made a dis­ap­point­ing start and Jonjo Shelvey ran the show once again. Keep­ing him fit will be cru­cial if New­cas­tle are to re­turn to the top flight at the first at­tempt.

Derby may be re­sid­ing in the bot­tom six but if they can turn their dom­i­nance into goals they will be con­tend­ing for the top six at the very least this year.

The Rams may have lost Jeff Hen­drick and Chris Martin dur­ing the sum­mer but the fact that they could leave Tom Ince, Dar­ren Bent, Bradley John­son, Ja­cob But­ter­field and Nick Black­man on the bench shows how much strength in depth they have. Ikechi Anya looks to be a fan­tas­tic ac­qui­si­tion, and while James Wil­son and Matej Vy­dra may not have been at their best against New­cas­tle they are sure to come good be­fore too long.

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