Derby County v Leeds United: Returning McClaren keen to excite Rams fans

Steve McClaren has promised an exciting brand of football as he embarks on his second spell at Derby.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 14th October 2016, 1:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 25th October 2016, 6:52 pm
Steve McClaren.
Steve McClaren.

The former England manager kicks off his second stint at the iPro Stadium at home to Leeds United on Saturday after succeeding Nigel Pearson.

Derby are yet to win at home in the Sky Bet Championship this season and are only a couple of points above the relegation zone.

“I’ve spoken to the players; we have to establish a culture,” McClaren told Rams Player HD.

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“We want them to train how they play, Monday to Friday. Let’s play football, be productive and win football matches.

“Let’s get back to playing exciting football, but that will take time.

“Before, it was a footballing team. We’ve got to get back to that.

“We want to get this place buzzing again and maximise the potential that is here.”

McClaren’s opposite number Garry Monk will be in the stands as he serves a one-match touchline ban for a recent outburst at Bristol City.

But Monk, who was also fined £2,000 after admitting a Football Association misconduct charge following the 1-0 defeat at Ashton Gate, said his absence pitch-side does not present a problem.

“I am not in the technical area but the preparation has been exactly the same,” Monk said. “Communication with the bench will be fine so it is really only physically in the technical area where I won’t be.

“The way that we work, for this one game, there is no problem. I am still very much involved.”

Steve Bruce takes charge of Aston Villa for the first time in the evening kick-off at home to Wolves.

Villa have won only once this season following last season’s relegation from the Premier League, but Bruce believes he has inherited a strong squad.

“I realise we have to turn this around and I’m quietly confident with the group of players I’ve seen on paper,” Bruce said.

“When you look at the squad we are capable of mounting a challenge and that can be this year too. We’re capable of being a very good team.”

With leaders Huddersfield’s Yorkshire derby with Sheffield Wednesday not taking place until Sunday, Norwich will take over at the summit by beating bottom-club Rotherham.

Third-placed Newcastle are at home to Brentford, Brighton welcome Preston and Ipswich travel to Blackburn.

Reading make the short trip to QPR as respective managers Jaap Stam and Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink pit their wits against each other 25 years after they first did so as players in their native Holland.

“I played a couple of times against him when he played at Telstar in Holland!” Stam told the official Reading website.

“And, of course I played alongside him for the national team.

“It’s always nice when you see former players who you have played with when they go into coaching and into management, and you follow how they are doing.”

Elsewhere, Barnsley are at home to Fulham and Wigan entertain Burton.