Kev vows to make the Rams fans proud
KEVIN Phillips knows what it takes to win at Pride Park.
In 1999 Derby’s new assistant coach hit a hattrick for Sunderland in a 5-0 away win en-route to finishing the season with 30 Premier League goals, while the Rams finished that campaign with a league-high ten defeats on home turf.
This term they are also yet to register a win in front of their home faithful, but, when Burnley come to town tomorrow, Phillips believes that will be a perfect time to start making Pride Park a fortress.
“(Burnley boss) Sean Dyche always sets his teams up so that they are hard to beat, but we’re the home team,” said the 42year-old, who has left his job as Leicester coach to join up with Paul Clement.
“With that home crowd behind us it’s a tough place to come and get results, I’ve seen it for myself over the years as a player.We have to make it a bit of a fortress.
“Teams will enjoy coming to Pride Park because it’s a great place to play football, but we need to make it ugly.We need to make it tough for opponents.
“We’re only four points behind Burnley and both teams are coming off the back of some really good results, so it will be a tough match.”
Derby will begin their quest for change without captain Chris Baird, who suffered a head injury in last weekend’s meeting with Preston, but George Thorne looks set to return after calf trouble.
Former Claret Jason Shackell also looks set to take his place in the starting Derby defence, and Burnley striker Sam Vokes is keen to show the 31year-old what he’s been missing at Turf Moor.
“I’ll be speaking to Shacks in the build-up, I’m sure, and will be having a bit of banter with him,” said Vokes. “It will be good to go up against him. He was obviously a good mate when he was here, but when you step across the line it’s all professional.
“It’s important we keep our heads down and take our recent performances into it.”
KEY MAN ANDRE GRAY Burnley