Preview: Leicester City v Derby

Derby County must feel they stand a good chance of progressing to the fifth round of the FA Cup as they face a Leicester side with their focus firmly on Premier League survival.

The Rams came within minutes of defeating the 2015/16 Champions at Pride Park in January only for Wes Morgan to net an 86th minute equaliser and force a replay.

Darren Bent had got the scoring underway with an own goal in the original tie ahead of redeeming himself with a first-half equaliser before Craig Bryson put Derby ahead. A win appeared to be on the cards for the Championship side before the Leicester captain's late header.

Having seen his side slip to within a point of the relegation places, Foxes boss Claudio Ranieri admitted that while the FA Cup is important, it is difficult to not focus on their survival needs.

And ahead of an important Premier League clash with Swansea on Sunday, Ranieri said: "Of course we need a win but now, for us, the Premier League is very, very important.

"I know the FA Cup is very important but our mind is more on the Premier League."

He added: "We have to improve right now. It’s time for every single one of us, right from the top to the bottom of this club to stand up and be counted because if we don’t we’re going to end up getting relegated and nobody wants that."

Amid reports of player unrest, he explained: "We’re a group of players who are low on confidence but certainly not low on fight. We’ll fight to the end, whatever that might be but I can guarantee every player in there is hurting."

And while Leicester come into this tie on the back of four defeats, Derby have won two and lost two of their last four league games.

They last suffered a narrow 1-0 defeat to Newcastle away from home, on Saturday.

In team news, Leicester will be without striker Islam Slimani, who is still recovering from a minor groin injury.

Leonardo Ulloa faces a late fitness test from a muscular problem.

Derby midfielder Jacob Butterfield, meanwhile, expects a tough test against Leicester despite their recent run of poor form.

He told RamsTV: “It’s a good game for us to go and play in; they’re the Premier League champions. 

“Obviously they are having a tough time at the moment in terms of results, but we know exactly what they’re capable of. 

“Leicester have a really talented group of players that went and achieved something unbelievable last season. 

“They’ve lost a few recently so obviously we want to go and start well, hopefully get a goal in front and see how they and their fans react to that."

The winner of this tie will face Millwall on 18 February.

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