It will be a unique East Midlands derby on Friday night as Derby take on Nottingham Forest at the City Ground (7.45pm kick off) in front of an empty stadium, but winger Tom Lawrence is hoping to do supporters proud as the Rams aim to kick-start their season.
Since the resumption of football in June following the COVID-19 outbreak, supporters have not been allowed in football stadia around the country.
That means key fixtures have been played behind-closed-doors and streamed to supporters, who have watched on from their own living quarters.
It won’t be the first time the East Midlands derby will have been played before an empty stadium, as Chris Martin scored a late goal for the Rams in a 1-1 draw at Pride Park Stadium in July.
The fixture is usually a sell out for both home and away supporters and although it will continue to be different for the time being, Lawrence is hoping to ensure all Rams supporters are in good spirits at full time.
Speaking to RamsTV ahead of the game, Lawrence said: “The game is one for the fans really and I’m gutted not to have the away support there on Friday, but hopefully we can get the win for them.
“As a player you go into the game the same way, it is just that the fans can give you that little bit extra when you need a goal or to hold on to a lead.
“It is hard in that aspect but it should never change for a player.
“You go into a Forest game, or any match for that matter, giving 100 per cent and want to win.”
Lawrence does have happy memories of coming up against Forest and hopes to add to that this time around.
Whilst he missed the fixture against the Reds in July due to suspension, he was part of the side which beat Forest 2-0 at Pride Park Stadium in 2017 where Matej Vydra opened the scoring within the first 24 seconds.
“The first thing to come to my memory is the 2-0 win when Matej Vydra scored,” he commented.
“That was my first local derby for the club, so that is always a big one that stands out for me.”