sport

Clough wants to keep players

Derby manager Nigel Clough has made it clear he does not want to lose any of his players during the January transfer window.

His comments came following their 3-1 home victory over Middlesbrough which left the Rams just three points off a play-off spot.

Michael Jacobs, Jeff Hendrick and Conor Sammon fired Derby into a three-goal lead with visiting Boro snatching a consolation with 91 minutes on the clock.

Clough is concerned that Will Hughes and John Brayford could be targeted by other clubs during the window saying: "I don't know how many scouts were here but there have been a fair few at our games this season.

"There have been no bids for any player so far but the window has only been open for about 12 hours.

"We don't want to lose anybody but you know how it is in football. Maybe we will have to turn the phone off for a few days.

"We need to get some people fit but we will keep putting the youngsters in. We haven't done any loans this season and if we get an injury, we will put one of the young players - like Kieron Freeman."

As for Tuesday's clash at Pride Park, he added: "We've played as well as this in other games this season but considering the team we had out and the opposition, this is certainly up there.

"It's a remarkable result and a very good performance.

"It was a big ask physically today but we couldn't have asked any more from the players."