Derby have began their search for a new manager following the news that Frank Lampard is in talks with Chelsea.
So far, the Daily Mail have suggested that Garry Monk and Darren Moore are early contenders, whilst John Eustace and Derek McInnes have also been mentioned.
Monk is recently out of a job after being dismissed by Birmingham last week, and he could be exactly what Derby need.
Chairman Mel Morris stated that Lampard was brought in because he fit the club’s philosophy and would build a link between the academy and the first team, so it is likely the new manager would have to fit the same criteria.
Monk is still early on in his managerial career, but has already had spells at Swansea, Leeds, Middlesbrough and Birmingham, with mixed success, but he could be what Derby need.
Here are 2 pros and 2 cons to Derby appointing the 40-year-old.
The club’s philosophy suits Monk’s brand of football
Monk spent years at Swansea as a player and manager, and in that time got used to a possession style of football which has stuck with him ever since.
Since Mel Morris took control of Derby in 2014 The Rams have adopted a similar stay. They varied to a more counter-attack style under Lampard but that was largely due to the personnel Lampard brought in on loan – Harry Wilson and Mason Mount were particularly used to that style.
If it’s a passing team Morris wants, then Monk is the right man.
Monk is capable of managing on a tight budget
At three of the four clubs Monk has managed he has been limited in his spending power.
Despite a marginal net spend at Leeds he guided them to their joint-highest finish for ten years, narrowly missing out on the play-offs by just five points, and at Birmingham he was only able to spend money on one player but still led them to a respectable finished despite a points deduction.
Derby could be in a similar position this summer. Last season their big signings came in the forms of loans as Mel Morris chose to cut back on the budget. Morris is also looking for Derby’s young players to get more of an opportunity which indicates there won’t be too many funds available for transfers.
Monk has shown he is capable of working with a small squad and getting the best out of the players at his disposal, and therefore he would suit Derby very well in that regard.
He generally doesn’t favour young players
Despite not having much money to work with in his career, Monk’s record of bringing through youth players leaves a lot to be desired.
At Birmingham he went with tried and tested players and the only young players given an opportunity were those who came on loan from other clubs, such as Conor Mahoney.
The same can be said for his spell at Middlesbrough where he spent millions on the likes of Britt Assombalonga and Martin Braithwaite, with academy prospects like Marcus Tavernier overlooked.
At Derby he will be required to give opportunities to young players. Jamal Bogle is proof of what the academy can produce and it is an important criteria for Morris. To be in contention for the manager’s role Monk may have to make promises that he will show more faith in youngsters, otherwise he is unlikely to get the job.
He hasn’t lasted for long at his previous clubs
This is a negative for Mel Morris, who is looking for stability having appointed six permanent managers in his last five years at the club. Monk has spent time at four clubs in as many years, and has now been sacked on three occasions – and only at Swansea did he spend more than one year at a club.
If Derby are to build towards the Premier League, they need some kind of long-term commitment and plan in place. Lampard did well to get them to the play-off final but they are currently not suited to the Premier League.
The new manager has to bring in young players with a long-term future at the club, those who would be able to step up to the Premier League. Monk looked like he was doing exactly that at Leeds but then he departed in favour of a better offer at Boro – and that is something Derby cannot afford right now.
However, all three of those sackings can be considered harsh. He did a good job at Swansea, Middlesbrough and Birmingham but simply wasn’t given the time he deserved.