Alan Hutton accepts that Derby County are one of the Championship’s in-form sides – but stresses his belief that Aston Villa “can match anyone in this league”.
The Rams have won three and drawn two in their last five fixtures but the claret and blues are heading to Pride Park in buoyant mood after a 2-0 victory over Bolton.
Hutton is expecting a good contest and is confident Dean Smith’s men can pick up the right result.
He told Club TV: “It’s going to be a tough game. We know that.
“They have started well. They have some dangerous players that we’re going to have to be aware of. But it's about us – how we perform on the day.
“We can match anyone in this league – in any game. If we work hard and do what we’ve been doing, I think we can cause them a lot of problems.
“It’s a big period. We are playing some of our biggest rivals. But I believe we have the players to cope with such big games.
“You want to play in these big games, too. That’s the aim of every professional footballer.
“We want to get to where we really want to be at the end of the season – and we get there by picking up the right results.”