Tom Huddlestone excited by Derby County v Nottingham Forest clash

Tom Huddlestone says he's relishing renewing old rivalries with Nottingham Forest tonight as the Reds visit Pride Park.

Monday, 17th December 2018, 4:16 pm
Updated Monday, 17th December 2018, 4:23 pm
Tom Huddlestone has fond memories of previous Forest games.

Both sides are vying for the top places in the Sky Bet Championship and a win for either would provide a huge psychological boost going into the Christmas period.

And Huddlestone knows it will be a passionate encounter.

He said: "It’s a perfect setting and scenario,”

“We just need to go out there and get a 90-minute performance out of all of us. Any three points in a local derby is good, regardless of performance or anything else.”

Huddlestone has strong links to Nottingham having been born there and come through the Forest academy as a child, although it was at Derby where he made his name after being thrown in for his debut as a 16-year-old against his home town club in 2003.

He said: "Everyone knows the general rivalry but on a personal level, being born and raised in Nottingham, my family and friends are Nottingham Forest fans, and looking back now, being let go as a kid makes for a good mix.

“As much as you want every game to feel similar, the two against Forest have a bit more significance for me and my family.

“I was at Forest from under 9s until under 12s so I had four seasons there and then I was let go. At the time it was devastating, being a 12-year-old and told you're not quite good enough, and then a few weeks later I came to Derby at under 13s. I kicked on quickly after that.

“I remember my debut well. I started right midfield and Lee Holmes got knocked out in the first 15 minutes and I ended up on the left.

“It was a hot day and I think we could have nicked it late in the game with Michael Johnson hitting the crossbar."