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Page last updated at 08:18 GMT, Friday, 21 August 2009 09:18 UK

Sturrock feels less pressure away

Paul Sturrock
Sturrock's side are looking for their first win of the season

Plymouth Argyle boss Paul Sturrock has said away matches provide an opportunity for his side to play a more natural game.

The Pilgrims travel to Derby on Saturday with a first win of the new season still eluding them.

Sturrock told BBC Devon: "Of course there's less pressure away from home and the players loosen up.

"Last year we had a torrid season with the worst home record in the league so there is an apprehension at times."

Plymouth drew 1-1 with Crystal Palace in their only away fixture this season and Sturrock believes a repeat of that performance will stand them in good stead at Pride Park.

"If you take the way we played at Palace and put it into the game on Saturday, then we'll be competitive," he said.

"But, they're all tough games in this league now and this is the first year that finance is dictating things."

The Scot added: "People are chucking a lot of money at their teams now and Derby are no different."

Plymouth have brought in several new players over the summer and Sturrock knows the new board at Argyle will be keen to see their investment reap rewards on the pitch.

He said: "We've only played three games so it's been very difficult to assess things because the new players have been fits and starts because of coming late and not being up to speed.

"The judgement on the team will be made further down the road."

Despite the relative infancy of the Championship season, two of the Sturrock's new signings have already picked up injuries, with Bradley Wright-Phillips out with a torn calf muscle and Cillian Sheridan suffering from a thigh injury.

"Sheridan is a doubt for Saturday, but I'm very confident Bradley [Wright-Phillips] will be back be back by the end of September."

606: DEBATE

Getting his side back to full strength is a priority for Sturrock, but in the meantime he knows that three points on the board away at Derby will go some way to ease the early-season nerves at Home Park.

"I think we're a better team than we were last year," he said. "And I think that everybody who's watched us through pre-season and competitively will agree."

"There's a spirit about the players and a will to win and they're fully committed to the cause."



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