Wayne Rooney has stressed that Derby County’s players are giving their all to turn their encouraging early-season performances into results.
Derby have picked up one win and four draws from their opening seven league fixtures of the 2021/22 Sky Bet Championship season.
Rooney’s side have seven points, and three clean sheets, to their name so far and have produced a number of encouraging displays.
The Rams have registered three successive draws on home turf at the start of the campaign in the league against Huddersfield Town, Middlesbrough and Nottingham Forest.
The Derby boss now wants to see their efforts rewarded by picking up their first home win of the campaign when they welcome Stoke City to Pride Park Stadium on Saturday (3pm kick-off).
“Hopefully we can get that first home win,” Rooney told RamsTV.
“I think a lot of the performances this season have been good but now we need to turn them into wins. Hopefully tomorrow we can put in a good performance and try to get three points.
“I think the effort and work that the lads are putting in every game is what we need. It’s what the fans want to see as well, players playing for the club and trying to get results on the pitch.
“We are trying to move forward and they are giving me all their effort in every game.”
On tomorrow’s opponents, he added: “We know it will be a tough game this weekend. Stoke have started the season well so we need to be at our best.”
Rooney opted to change the team shape and style of play for Tuesday night’s trip across the Midlands to West Bromwich Albion.
It was a move that paid dividends as Derby produced a resilient performance against the league leaders by recording a 0-0 draw.
Rooney spent pre-season implementing a specific style of play on his squad, but he also understands the need to be adaptable.
“I want us to play,” Rooney said. “The way we played on Tuesday was what I felt was needed.
“Saturday will be more of a football match because Stoke try to play as well. They are a team that will try and play and cause you problems through passing the ball so it will be a bit more of a football match.
“We have to be ready to play, be braver on the ball but also to mix it up as well when required.”
He concluded: “We have been working on a style of play since pre-season. It’s something which I believe in and the players as well. There might be games where we go away from that because that’s what is needed but in the main, we want to play.
“We have good players who take the ball, we want to be brave and try to cause the opposition problems moving the ball.”