Positions 11 - 15

11. Derby County and Nottingham Forest

Arguments rage about the biggest rivalry in the West Midlands, but in the East Midlands it's no contest - the Rams and Forest, or the 'Sheep' and the 'Trees', as the fans often refer to each other. Nine out of ten fans of each club agree it's their biggest rivalry.

But despite being two of the oldest League clubs, and having first met competitively back in 1892, meetings between the Trent rivals have been relatively few. Only 79 competitive matches so far, with Forest having the slightly better record - 33 wins to the Rams' 27.

Those with slightly longer memories will recall Derby and Forest being two of the pre-eminent English clubs of the 1970s, with three titles between them. And the common factor in all those trophy successes was, of course, Mr Brian Clough.

Cloughie knew all about the rivalry between the two sets of fans when, after having guided Derby to two title wins, joined Forest (via Brighton and Leeds) and steered them to a League and League Cup double in 1978, followed by European Cup success in 1979 and 1980.

Forest's climb from relative obscurity to European glory coincided with Derby's slide down the League. The same month Forest lifted the European Cup for the second time, Derby were relegated to the old Second Division, and by 1984 the Rams were in Division Three. Forest meanwhile, were finishing in the top half of the First Division in 14 out of 15 seasons.

Derby at least had the distinction of winning the last Premiership meeting between the sides, in April 1999 - the 4-2 win was Derby's biggest against Forest for 24 years. Arguably The Rams have had the greater success in recent years, having been in the Premier League in five of the last 10 seasons (compared to Forest's one).

12. Blackpool and Preston North End

Hard to believe right now, with both clubs in the Championship, but back in the 1950s there was no bigger game in English football than this West Lancashire derby.

In that decade Preston were runners-up twice in the First Division and once in the FA Cup, while Blackpool were League runners-up, FA Cup winners and FA Cup finalists.

Preston were founder members of the Football League, and its first champions in 1889, a season in which they were undefeated in both League and FA Cup. During their 1950s heyday boasted the likes of Tom Finney, Charlie Wayman and Tommy Docherty in their playing ranks.

Blackpool's Cup-winners of 1953 - the so-called "Matthews Final" - included hat-trick hero Stan Mortensen, Bill Perry and, of course, wing wizard Stanley Matthews.

While Preston's decline began almost as soon as Tom Finney retired, Blackpool maintained their top-flight status throughout most of the 1960s, and so between 1961 and 1967 the rivals were a division apart.

And between 1974 and 1987 the Lancashire rivals only met in the FA Cup and League Cup (Preston winning on each occasion), with various promotions and relegations conspiring to separate them.

In the 1990s there were league meetings in Division Two, and thanks to Blackpool's play-off win last season the two clubs are now head-to-head in the Championship.

December's Championship match-up at Deepdale was the first League meeting between the rivals for almost eight years. There was trouble off the pitch and on, not helped by referee Mark Clattenburg refusing Preston's appeal for a penalty. Visitors Blackpool won the game 1-0, and Preston slumped to the bottom of the table.

Overall, the rivals have met only 89 times in League and Cup, dating back to 1901, and it's the Lilywhites of Preston who have the upper hand, with 43 wins to Blackpool's 29. But Seasiders' fans have the consolation of knowing that their record win - and Preston's record defeat - was a 7-0 derby victory at Deepdale in 1948.

13. Darlington and Hartlepool United

Based on the fans' survey alone, you could argue this is a bigger rivalry than Newcastle United and Sunderland up the road, as 95 per cent of supporters across both clubs named each other as their bitterest rivals, while fans of the Premiership rivals could muster a relatively lacklustre 90 per cent.

Given that these two clubs have spent the majority of their existence in the bottom two divisions of the Football League, it's no surprise they've met on 147 occasions since 1921.

And over those 80-odd years, the argument over who's biggest - and who's best - has raged on. On the basis of the derby games, it would be impossible to choose between the two. Hartlepool edge it overall, with 60 wins to Darlo's 57, but Darlington have scored more goals. Hardly settles the argument either way.

Hartlepool's promotion to League One at the end of last season means there are no derby clashes this season - only the fifth time in the past 20 seasons that the Teesside rivals won't have met.

The last encounter was at the Darlington Arena last March in front of more than 10,000 fans. Hartlepool arrived with a record-equalling run of 21 games unbeaten, while the Quakers were undefeated in 12, so something had to give. In the end, Hartlepool ran out comfortable 3-0 winners, thanks in no small part to two-goal hero Eifion Williams.

The win over their local rivals helped extend Pool's position at the top to five points, and despite late-season jitters - during which time Walsall took over top spot - they still achieved automatic promotion.

It was a painful result for the Darlington faithful, who have only seen their side beat Hartlepool in a League game once since 1999.

14. Luton Town and Watford

OK, it's not Liverpool and Manchester United, or Arsenal and Spurs, but in the neighbouring counties of Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire there's a football rivalry just as strong, and one that often erupts off the park as well as on when the two clubs meet.

In fact, one esteemed footy magazine once described it as the fiercest rivalry in English football.

Had the two clubs met more often than they have, these long-time foes would be challenging for a much higher spot in the Rivalries Report.

Although Luton had a brief dalliance with the Football League at the start of the 20th century, it wasn't until 1920 that the Hatters' established themselves as a fully-fledged League club. Among the other clubs joining that newly-formed Division Three was Watford.

Both games that first season ended 1-0 to the home side, and it's a pattern that has been repeated many times since. Across the 84 league and cup games since 1920, half have been won by the home side, and only 25 per cent by the away team.

Due to various relegations and promotions, the clubs didn't meet between 1937 and 1963, and in the seasons up to 1980 those clashes were fairly sporadic. In the 1980s - as Second and then First Division clubs - they met season after season, but apart from one season together in the Championship the rivals haven't met in the League since 1998.

A memorable season for both was 1981-82, when the two clubs were promoted to the top flight. For Luton fans, however, there was the satisfaction of pipping their neighbours to the Second Division Championship trophy.

In 1984 and 1985, Luton and Watford met in memorable FA Cup ties, Watford winning the first 4-3 in a replay that went to extra time, and went on to reach the final. Luton got their revenge a year later, triumphing in the third round after two replays.

The last League clash was in April 2006, when Watford's point in a 1-1 draw at Vicarage Road was enough to secure their play-off spot. Watford, of course, went on to clinch promotion to the Premiership.

15. Blackburn Rovers and Burnley

They may not have met in a league game for seven years, but both sets of supporters reckon this is their biggest rivalry.

Both these clubs were founder members of the Football League, and both have two League titles to their name. Rovers have the upperhand on FA Cup wins - six versus one - but it wasn't until 15 years ago that their paths began to diverge.

While Burnley spent the early 1990s climbing their way out of the Fourth Division, Blackburn - with millionaire owner Jack Walker - were building a side that would lead them to Premiership glory. Their respective stadia were just 10 miles apart, but for the fans it must have felt like 10 million miles.

In 1993-94 Rovers were Premiership runners-up, but the following season Kenny Dalglish's expensively-built side - including England striker Alan Shearer - took the title, while Burnley were relegated back down to English football's third tier.

Burnley and Blackburn did meet in the old Nationwide First Division for two seasons between 1999 and 2001 after Rovers were relegated from the Premiership. It took them two seasons to get back.

In that second season, when Rovers finished second to Fulham, six of their points came at the expense of Burnley. A 2-0 win at Turf Moor the week before Christmas (in front of a season's best crowd of over 21,000, which caused the closure of the M65) was followed by a 5-0 win at Ewood Park in April.

That season's dominance by Rovers was not typical of their rivalry with the Clarets, which historically has been very close. Across 91 league and cup matches since 1888, the win tally is 39-37 in Blackburn's favour. Before the 1980s, Burnley had the superior record - but only just.

The last derby game was a fifth round FA Cup tie at Turf Moor in 2005. Burnley had scalped Liverpool and Bournemouth to reach the last 16, and the fans were confident of seeing off the Premiership strugglers. The game never lived up to the pre-match hype and ended in a goalless draw. Rovers won the replay 2-1 at Ewood Park.