Midfielder Jason Knight is keen to remain positive ahead of Derby County’s next Sky Bet Championship fixture against Middlesbrough on Wednesday night (7pm kick-off).

The Rams face a trip north to take on Boro at the Riverside Stadium, who are managed by experienced boss Neil Warnock.

They sit four points outside the play-off positions but are without a win in three games, while Derby are looking to climb the table after a slow start to the campaign.

Under a new management quartet of Liam Rosenior, Wayne Rooney, Shay Given and Justin Walker – after Phillip Cocu’s departure earlier this month - Derby tasted defeat in their first game following a 1-0 defeat at Ashton Gate against Bristol City.

However, the Rams were more positive in their play and created a number of chances but could not find the opening goal.

Knight, who recently was awarded his full Republic of Ireland debut in the November international window, knows they need to stay positive to turn their form around and admits they need to be more ruthless as a team.

“It’s a lot of frustration, I guess, and there is no other way of putting it,” he told RamsTV. “We want to be much, much higher in the table than we are and it is ultimately down to us as players to get ourselves out of that.

“We thought as a collective that we played quite well on Saturday and we were in control a lot of the game, but I think it is just down to us now to be more ruthless in front of goal and we need to make that happen.”

Whilst the midfielder was away on international duty, the players were getting accustomed to the methods of the new management team.

Now that he is back with the squad, Knight has noticed an extra spring in everyone’s step.

He hopes the hard work on the training ground will bear fruit sooner rather than later.

“It has been really good,” Knight admitted. “It has been a really good atmosphere, I heard last week it was a really good atmosphere from Monday onwards and since I have come back it has been really good. It is really intense in training.”