Dundee v Dundee United: Robbie Neilson says derbies will be key in title race

Dundee United hammered neighbours Dundee 6-2 at Tannadice in August
Dundee United hammered neighbours Dundee 6-2 at Tannadice in August
Scottish Championship: Dundee v Dundee United
Venue: Dens Park, Dundee Date: Friday, 8 November Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/DAB/online, live text coverage on the BBC Sport website & app.

Robbie Neilson believes derby games will be key in the Championship title race as Dundee United prepare for Friday's visit to Dens Park.

United enjoy a three-point cushion at the top of the table following three victories in a row.

Neilson's Tangerines side beat their neighbours 6-2 at Tannadice in August, but the Dark Blues are also on a run of three straight wins in the league.

"The derbies have a quite a big influence on the season," said Neilson.

"It sets a bit of momentum, but also the league is going to be very tight, so it is important that you pick up maximum points in these games, especially against teams that you would expect to be in the mix at the end."

Dundee sit third in the table, six points behind the leaders.

United were 5-1 up after 46 minutes in the last derby meeting, but head coach Neilson is not expecting such a comfortable evening this time.

"Although the scoreline in the last game was quite one-sided, when you actually look at the whole game, it was a tough game for us, there were periods in the game when Dundee were on top," he said.

"I have been involved in loads of derbies, win, lose or draw, nobody cares what you did in the last one. People only care about what the score will be at 10 o'clock on Friday night, that is all that matters, so from our perspective, we are not even interested in the last one at Tannadice, it is about this one at Dens Park.

"I don't think we are anywhere near having clicked yet. There is still a long, long way to go, there are going to be highs and lows."

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