Just Focussed On The Football
Peter Houston is only bothered abouit this weekend's agme
Dundee United manager Peter Houston is looking forward to walking back to Tannadice on Sunday following the derby game with Dundee at Dens Park. United will cross the road from their home ground for the eagerly anticipated away game. Houston's first experience of Dundee derbies came at Dens Park in July's pre-season game and a month later in the SPL at Tannadice, his side winning 3-0 on both occasions. Houston said: "It's unique that you're walking to an away match. I've never, ever experienced that. There's plenty of security there, but it's nice to be able to walk up - and I've only done it once in the pre-season friendly. It's better after the match because you've won and the supporters are not giving you stick when you're walking down the hill. Hopefully late on Sunday afternoon we're getting cheered walking back down to Tannadice." The return of Dundee to the top-flight meant the return of the derby fixture, one Houston is determined his in-form side win to halt a mini-revival from the Dark Blues, who have won three of their last five games. Houston went on: "I've been here six years this month and for almost six years we never had a derby. I always wondered what it was going to be like. It's a huge game. We've had a couple of derbies this season. Thankfully the results have gone in our favour, but I don't think we've played that well. But a derby match isn't all about playing well, it's about winning. Favourites go out the window when it comes to a derby match. Sometimes you need a wee break and I look at the last derby match when Nicky Riley had a double chance and our goalkeeper saved it. We got goals at a good time. I honestly believe in the two derby matches we've played we've not played well, but we won. That's what kept everybody happy. It would be nice to win on Sunday, first and foremost. It would also be nicer to win having played that bit better than in the previous two." The usual big build up to a derby game in the city has been missing due to the fall-out with Rangers over their February's fifth round tie of the Scottish Cup. Rangers fans have called for a boycott of the game as they still blame United fore their part in the unsuccessful bid for the newco Rangers to enter the SPL. Rangers chief executive Charles Green announced on Tuesday his club would not be taking up their ticket allocation for their first away game at an SPL ground since they rejoined the SFL third division. Two days later Green confirmed that Rangers, despite the non-attendance of fans, would still accept the gate receipts to which they are entitled, with the proceeds going to charity. Houston denied it was a distraction ahead of this week's game and played down the situation. He said: "All I'm interested in is the game and the football side and I'll let the powers that be fall out or argue about who's going to be there or not. It will not matter to me. It will not matter to (Rangers manager) Ally McCoist either, because the only thing we're interested in is trying to win that match. Whoever's in the park and how many are in the park, doesn't really matter to me. It's all about trying to win against a good Rangers side who have got international players. Because they're a Third Division team by name, doesn't mean they're a Third Division team".
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