Central defender Richard Keogh does not believe that Derby County's results against Aston Villa earlier in the season will have a bearing on Monday’s Sky Bet Championship Play-Off Final.

Derby suffered defeats in both games against Dean Smith’s men in the regular campaign. A 3-0 defeat at Pride Park Stadium in November was followed by a 4-0 defeat at Villa Park at the start of March.

Whilst those have been heavy defeats, the Rams have shown their resilience to be in the position they currently are.

“It is a one-off game now, knock out football is different,” he told RamsTV. “Villa are a great team; they have got a very good manager who has gone in there and done a great job with them.

“With Jack Grealish coming back, he is a real talisman for them and him coming back has given the team real confidence and then going on the run that they did.

“They have got Premier League players and it is going to be a tough game, but it doesn’t matter what has gone on in the season now.

“It is about preparing for this one game and giving everything. We have had great preparations and we are just looking forward to it.”

The excitement is building ahead of the Final.

The whole season comes down to Monday’s clash.

The Rams have enjoyed a warm-weather training camp in preparation for the game and Keogh cannot is excited for the occasion.

“This is what it is about, this is football,” he said. “You work so hard from the start of pre-season and you sacrifice so much.

“To play how we have when we have been written off and the underdogs – we are probably underdogs a little bit in this game – but that doesn’t bother us.

“We just go there with the mindset that we just have to do what we are capable of, if we can do that then we will give ourselves a great chance of doing it.”