Scott Carson is hoping to go one step further this time around after he arrived back at the Derby County Training Centre for the first day of pre-season under Frank Lampard.
The Rams’ No.1 enjoyed arguably the best campaign of his career last term, as he kept 20 clean sheets in a single season for the first time.
Now, he’s ready to go again for his 16th career as a professional and he admits that there are still nerves on the first day, even for a player of his experience.
Speaking to RamsTV, he said: “You wake up and you’re a little bit nervous because you don’t know what to expect and you wonder if you can still catch a ball, even after so many years!
“They get tougher because I’m not getting any younger! You have to put it in now and hope that if you have a good pre-season, it keeps you fit and strong for the season and that’s what it’s all about.”
Ultimately, the 2017/18 campaign ended in disappointment for Carson and Derby, but the focus is now on taking the next step under the new boss.
Carson is well acquainted with Lampard - having featured alongside him for England - and he is sure that his stellar playing career will mean that the squad will arrive with instant respect.
He explained: “I’ve spoken to him on the phone. It’s a brilliant appointment for a club and the excitement has been brilliant.
“I’m sure that he will be as excited as we are, because everybody has the utmost respect for what he’s done as a player.
“We have a massive chance this season and hopefully we can go one step further.”
There will be a few new faces for Carson to get used to over the coming weeks, in particular Shay Given, who was confirmed as the club’s Head Goalkeeping Coach on Friday.
On the appointment, Carson added: “I’m delighted, when I heard about it, I was buzzing.
“When I was a kid, he was someone that I really looked up to and I played against him a couple of times, and I can’t wait for him to get started.
“When you look at the career that Shay had, he will bring something totally different.
“It’s a brilliant one for us [goalkeepers], especially.”