LEE Grant says Derby County are in no mood to give up a top six spot after spending almost four months in a Championship play-off position.
The Rams face rivals Nottingham Forest at the iPro Stadium today, kick-off 12.15pm, with 10 matches remaining in the promotion race.
Leaders Leicester City and Burnley are in the box seats for automatic promotion.
Derby, in third, along with Queen’s Park Rangers, Wigan and Forest fill the play-off slots with Reading and Brighton one point outside.
Grant says the Rams are delighted to be in the mix.
“We are full of confidence, there is a nice belief about the place,” said the Derby goalkeeper. “We have worked hard and earned the right to be in the top six.
“We’re determined to stay there but we know the only thing that will get us to where we want to be is focus, and not thinking how well we have done.”
Grant has ‘derby’ experience with the Rams, Burnley and Sheffield Wednesday.
He made his first start for Rams in a goalless draw against Forest in 2002.
“You always look forward to this game in the hope you come out of it on the right side of the result,” he said.
“There is an added edge to it this year with the fact both us and Forest are doing so well.
“For us, as players, we know Saturday is of huge importance but there are only three points at stake. Unfortunately, you don’t get any more for winning a derby game although I think you should get four points, or even five when it is so important!”
The goals have dried up for Derby. They have failed to score in their last four matches but have kept five clean sheets in the last seven.
“I think that is really important at this stage of the season,” said Grant.
“You want to have a very organised, solid feel about the side, and if we can continue that it will really stand us in good stead for the 10 games or nine after the Forest game.
“It is something the manager has asked for to give the lads up top a platform to build on.”