Ward grateful to Sammon for helping him to find a rich vein of scoring form
JAMIE Ward's goals-per-games ratio for Derby County this season is impressive.
He has hit nine in 15 appearances and the striker is on a hot run of four goals in his last four league outings.
His goal in Tuesday's defeat at Hull City makes him the club's joint top scorer with Theo Robinson.
Ward is delighted to be back on the pitch after missing three months with hamstring trouble.
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He is also pleased to be among the goals but is quick to deflect praise on to his strike partner, Conor Sammon.
"Sammo does a lot of the dirty work and I get the plaudits. Sometimes people need to realise the hard work Sammo has done and how he makes it easier for me," said Ward.
The pairing has started only 11 league games, in which Ward has found the net eight times.
If anyone understands and is grateful for the unselfish, tireless work of Sammon, it is Ward.
Sammon has scored seven goals in 30 starts since his move from Wigan Athletic in the summer.
His contribution and the fact he adds a crucial focal point to the attack is not fully recognised by everybody but it is no coincidence that Derby are one of the top scorers at home in the division
"Football is about opinions," said Ward. "If you have a football brain, you will realise what he does for the team. The whole team benefits from the work he puts in.
"I know what he does for the team and I know what he does for me.
"We are striking up a good understanding."
Ward and Sammon are set to lead the Rams attack again this afternoon when Wolverhampton Wanderers visit Pride Park.
Derby are eight points adrift of the top six and the same amount of points ahead of the relegation places. The Championship remains incredibly tight.
"It is – but we don't really look behind us because we don't plan on getting involved in that," said Ward.
"Our aim is to keep going forward, keep picking up results and keep doing a good job for the gaffer.
"We will set ourselves a little target for the two home games against Wolves and then Bolton on Tuesday – and, hopefully, we will reach that target. Can I say what that target is? No.
"They are two tough games. Both teams have come down from the Premier League and they have struggled but we know they have the experience and the ability to cause problems.
"The table does not lie but we know both teams have a lot of ability."
Derby drew 1-1 at Wolves in August. They dominated for long spells but had to rely on a last-gasp equaliser from Robinson in the third minute of stoppage time.