Bruno only appeared in one of the first 13 FA Cup ties Albion played after his arrival from Valencia in the summer of 2012.

Maybe we should make that figure one of the first 12.

He was suspended for the third-round tie at Brentford in 2014-15 following a red card at Wolves.

But it is still a sign of the times for the right-back that he has now started five of the last six - and all four this season.

The knockout competitions used to be a chance to rest as he played every, or almost every, league game.

Now it is an opportunity to get out and lead the side. A chance to train all week knowing there will be a match at the end of it. And he is relishing it.

He told The Argus: “I really enjoyed it. For me, just being on the pitch is the main thing. As footballers, we are working all week to be there.

“We knew that Derby are a really good side and that they are expansive in the way they play.

“They came back from 2-0 at Southampton (to win their third-round replay) and we were aware of that at half-time.

“But I thought in the first half we were really good.

“Maybe in the second half, we didn’t take advantage of the chances and the spaces.”

Bruno skippered what is becoming the FA Cup team - certainly in terms of the four players who have started all four games and the six who have started three.

But it is not a team who have played a lot of games together.

That can make life tricky, even if the cohesion was there in the first half.

Bruno said: “Always changes don’t help but we have got really good depth in the squad.

“That is what we are looking for, to have everyone on top of their game.

“It has been a good run. We had a good start at Bournemouth and away to West Brom.

“Especially for the players who are not getting in the starting XI, to get minutes is really important.”

The skipper had several family friends dotted around the stadium who do not usually get to games.

Ticket pricing and availability have helped make these home ties family days out for many.

The FA Cup is a different game and Bruno was made aware of growing excitement from the moment the win was secured in the West Brom replay.

But it can also be excitement with an emotional safety net which does not exist if you fail in the league.

It can be ‘nothing to lose’ for teams who fall behind, as Derby proved.

Bruno said: “We knew they were going to take risks and we didn’t take advantage of those spaces, those counters and that last pass.

“We needed a little bit more quality in the last third to kill the game.”

Still, it was exciting. It was fun at times.

The fans got their £15 or a fiver’s worth without the need for the 30 minutes of free football which a Derby equaliser would have brought.

For Bruno, it was an 11th start since his injury-curtailed season-opener at Watford, of which seven have been wins.

That includes all four of Albion’s away victories in league and cup and four of their seven Prem successes.

Which is not to say it is all down to one player. Far from it. Lots of factors come into play.

But results like that certainly help you enjoy your football when you get the chance to play.

And Bruno, whose post-match Instagram offering read “Great win, we love @emiratesfacup, thanks for your support”, really enjoyed Saturday afternoon.