Gary Rowett: Derby boss wants side to have 'physical edge'
Manager Gary Rowett wants Derby County to have a "real physical edge" to their play next season and has vowed to push them hard when they return to training.
Rowett, 43, took over at the Rams in March, winning four and drawing three of his nine games in charge.
The former Birmingham City boss told BBC Radio Derby: "The players have left the building now and have a little bit of an idea about what to expect.
"I will demand a lot more from the team physically. Top teams work hard."
The Championship club had a miserable season which saw Nigel Pearson and Steve McClaren both replaced as manager and chief executive Sam Rush sacked towards the end of the campaign.
Rowett brought stability on the pitch after taking over from McClaren, but was unable to go on the near-perfect run needed to reach the play-offs as they finished ninth.
He targeted player fitness as one of the key areas to work on in the summer.
"Next season we want a real physical edge about us and the players are already getting prepared for that," he added.
"It doesn't mean we will have an old fashioned pre-season where they won't see a ball for three weeks and will be sick running up hills and going to army camps.
"But I would need them be fitter for them to play the way we want them to play."