Nottingham Forest face East Midlands rivals Derby County for the second time in three months as they look to progress into the third round of The FA Cup.
The Reds and The Rams have already faced each other this season in a fierce showdown at Pride Park in the FA Women’s National League. Precious Hamilton headed home on the 83rdminute as Forest embarked back home down the A52 with all three points – and bragging rights.
Forest head into the fixture in impressive form as they collected their sixth consecutive victory on Sunday afternoon. The Reds advanced into the semi-finals of The Nottinghamshire County Cup with a 6-0 win over Notts County Development side. Mai Moncaster, Sophie Bonser, Aimee Hickingbotham and Georgia Hewitt all bagged themselves a goal each as they set The Reds on course for the win. Katie Middleton also joined the goal scoring party as she netted a brace to get herself off the mark for the season.
Along with their recent six wins on the bounce Forest have enjoyed a great few months of results as they have picked up nine wins out of their last 10 matches. The side have found the back of the net a whopping 43 times during that time and have only conceded eight in return. Precious Hamilton has played a key part in that feat as she has scored 15 of the side’s goals during that period. The striker currently sits top of the goal scoring charts as she is the top goal scorer across England’s top three divisions with 15 league goals and with a further four goals in cup competitions she will be looking to add to her tally on Sunday.
Derby have endured a tough two months of fixtures as they have only managed to pick up two wins in their last five outings with both of them coming in cup competitions. The two wins have come in their most recent games as they progressed in the FA Women’s National League Cup with a 10-1 win over lower league opposition The New Saints. Then after a month out of action due to pitch conditions the side returned back to the FA WNL Cup as they faced lower league opposition Brighouse Town and the tie went to penalties as The Rams eventually secured the win.
Ellie Gilliatt has been the stand-out Ram this season for the side as she is their leading goal scorer with 11 goals in as many games. The midfielder has also started every game for the side so far, this season and was the side’s star player when Forest faced them back in September at Pride Park so The Reds defence will be looking to shut her out for a second time running.
Aja Aguirre will be looking to record her second straight clean sheet against Derby on Sunday and extend the side’s record to six clean across the whole season so far. Aguirre made several crucial stops against Derby at Pride Park last September as she ensured the side picked up a win and clean sheet. This is the shot-stopper’s third spell with the club and has previously played in four East Midlands derby ties and she has picked up two wins and two clean sheets during that time.