Derby County have been plunged into a situation that no football team would ever want to be in.
Sat at the bottom of the Championship table after a points deduction and with the side thrust into administration, it isn’t ideal for the Rams or their fans at the moment. However, boss Wayne Rooney has been able to draw some solidity in his side from out of the darkness and the club are already back on a positive points total in the league.
After a 0-0 draw against Swansea, they’re now on two points and they’ll want to continue that fine form against Preston North End on Saturday.
They’ll want to turn that draw into a win though – and here’s two tweaks that could help them do just that.
Quiz: Have Derby County ever been involved in these 18 scenarios?
Throw in Louie Sibley
Sibley is another young and exciting Derby prospect that the Rams have had to rely on in recent seasons due to their current financial situation and off-field problems.
He’s looked extremely bright though and has that little bit of creativity about his game that can carve open defences and he is well capable of producing a bit of magic.
At just 20-years-old, the potential is there too to get even better. He’s featured nine times so far this year and although he has yet to bag a goal, if he gets one then it could be the confidence boost he needs to get even more.
Perhaps then, it may be worth giving Ravel Morrison a break in CAM from the last game and replacing him with Sibley. He would provide energy and a threat in terms of putting chances on a plate for the striker or bringing the other wingers into the game too.
Sibley does have that spark when you watch him – so they should utilise it against PNE.
Rest Richard Stearman and play Phil Jagielka
If Ravel Morrison is dropped, that’s one less experienced head in a team full of young stars. To make up for it, they should play Phil Jagielka over Richard Stearman.
Stearman has been solid but could be rotated out of the side to make way for the former Sheffield United man. When Jagielka has been trusted in the centre of defence, he has shone despite his age and was only out of the side really due to injury. Now fully recovered, he could form that partnership with Curtis Davies in the centre again.
Preston have the tall and quick Emil Riis up front, so Jagielka being back with his experience in the league would go a long way towards quashing his threat.
In addition, with the crosses that will no doubt be played in during the clash, Jagielka is adept in the air and would be able to handle the aerial threat from North End too. Therefore, it could be worth throwing him back in again for the fixture.