Derby midfielder Tom Ince discloses what Wolves player Scott Golbourne told him during match

Derby County West Stand

Derby County beat Wolverhampton Wanderers 4-2 when the sides met earlier in the season.

Derby County winger Tom Ince has revealed to BBC Sport that Scott Golbourne told him that Wolverhampton Wanderers set out a plan to man-mark him, before the two sides met earlier in the season.

Derby won 4-2 on that day, but Ince’s impact on the game was limited due to Wolves’ tactics.

It has been a similar story for much of the season for the 23-year-old attacking midfielder, and Ince admits that he has become a marked-man in the Championship.

"I knew teams were going to shut me out. When we played Wolves, the left-back said the manager told him to man-mark me," Ince said.

"It was difficult after last year and the expectation was to do it again."

Ince was in wonderful form while on loan at Derby last season, but he has not been as effective since signing a permanent deal.

The former Liverpool youngster had netted only three times for the Rams up until Tuesday night, when he struck a hat-trick in his side’s 4-0 win against Bristol City.

Ince will be hoping to push on after getting back on the score-sheet, but the England youth international insists that he never had any concerns about his ability.

"I never doubted myself but I knew it would difficult, especially at home, when teams would try and shut me out," he added.

"I'd be a bad player if people didn't want to mark me. It shows people are scared of what I can do with the football.

"If I am man-marked, then other players are in as well. There are always positives to it. I have to take it on the chin, make sure I can find myself space and play as well as I can every week."

Derby’s win over Bristol City has extended their excellent run of form, which has seen them lose just one of their last 16 matches.

Paul Clement’s side are now just two points away from the top of the Championship table, with their next fixture coming against Ipswich Town at the weekend.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch