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Play the game, not the occasion

15 January 2015

Nottingham Forest winger Chris Burke has stressed the need for The Reds to produce a professional display in Saturday’s East Midlands derby.

Forest face their arch-rivals Derby County at the iPro Stadium in what is sure to be a typically feisty affair.

And Burke, who was pleasantly surprised by the intensity of the atmosphere in September’s reverse fixture, is keen to keep his cool in one of the most testing fixtures of the season.

He told Forest Player: “As I’ve got older I’ve realised that you have to make sure you don’t play the occasion, you just play the game.

“You can’t let your team-mates down by getting sent off or doing anything rash. You can’t get too hyped up on it and let your emotions take over.

“I think the form guide goes out of the window in derby games. It doesn’t matter who’s playing well. What you do know is there will be two teams at it, looking to get a result with energy, passion and commitment.”

Burke’s Scotland exploits mean he will be lining up against a number of familiar faces on Saturday – and he knows exactly what to expect from them.

He said: “I know quite a few from playing internationally – Russell Martin, Craig Bryson and Craig Forsyth. I know what they’ll be like leading up to this game.

“They’re great pros who will show us the respect we deserve, as we will do to them.”

Click here to watch the full interview on Forest Player.

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