Derby County face Blackburn Rovers on Friday night and Wayne Rooney has told fans not to panic or worry as he is confident of avoiding relegation.

The Rams currently sit four points clear of the drop zone but Rotherham have three games in hand over them which could drag Rooney’s side into the relegation battle.

Rooney discussed what Friday’s match means: “It’s a big game – they all are now. It’s a big 10 days for us. We have a tough game at Blackburn, Preston, and then it’s a huge game against Birmingham.

“We have to do our jobs and be focused. The last two performances have been good, but we need to turn them into results. We have to keep believing in ourselves.

“They’ve had some good performances, but not won their games. We know it’s a game where we have to be at our best to beat them. We need to be 100% focused going into this game,” Rooney added.

The Derby boss has also addressed how he is feeling if his side were to be dragged into the relegation discussion.

“I’m calm, relaxed, and have full belief in our players. The players take their lead from me in that sense. I want them to believe in themselves. It’s a challenge for them now to show the fight and heart. They’re ready for that from what I’ve seen this week.”

Rooney was then asked what makes the players confident that they can stay up? “I do,” he said. “My players trust me and what I’m telling them and that’s what gives them the confidence to stay in this league.”

Rooney certainly doesn’t lack belief.

He went on to say that six points in the next two games should be enough to steer them to safety, especially with Rotherham and Coventry playing each other on Thursday night.

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