After his mistake in the Championship play-off final and a, somewhat, poor start to the season, is it time for Derby County to start thinking about signing a new goalkeeper to replace Kelle Roos?
The 27-year-old has been a Derby player since 2014, making just under 30 appearances for the side. For the most part, his career has been made up of five loan spells at lower league clubs.
Towards the end of last season, though, after an injury to Scott Carson, Roos was given a regular place in the first team that he ‘handled’ well. Unlike a loose cross he was posed with in the play-off final, losing out to 5ft 10in John McGinn. From then on, Derby supporters called for a new man between the sticks.
Since Cocu took over the side towards the second half of pre-season, though, there was little talk over signing a new goalkeeper. After 12 matches played so far this season, it is fair to say that Roos hasn’t made the best of starts.
Sarcastic, and quite demeaning, jeering fills Pride Park whenever Roos catches the ball. Supporters haven’t been discreet in their mocking and lack of confidence in their number one goalkeeper.
With that being said, who are three possible replacements that Cocu could look to make in the January transfer window?
The experienced Premier League goalkeeper is on loan at Qarabag until January. This could mean that the new year could be the perfect time for Derby to make a sweep for the World Cup capped keeper.
Begovic has been a regular Premier League performer at the likes of Stoke City, Chelsea and Bournemouth. This kind of player would be perfect for Derby who are in desperate need of an experienced head at the back after the injury to club captain Richard Keogh.
The 32-year-old has at least three years in him to perform at a top level and would be a quality addition to the Derby ranks. Having a player of such influence and quality to dominate the penalty area might stop Derby conceding set piece after set piece.
The perfect signing for Derby would be an experienced Championship and Premier League player who knows all too well about the transition between both leagues. For seasons now, Derby have flirted with promotion but have fallen at the final hurdle every time. Last season, that hurdle was a goalkeeping mistake in the play-off final.
No one fits that bill quite like Ruddy. Unbelievably, the current Wolverhampton Wanderers man is still only 32-years-old and would have a good few years before he started a decline in ability.
After being a fundamental part in Wolves’ emphatic promotion to the Premier League, Ruddy was cast aside to make way for Rui Patricio and has appeared just once in the Premier League. There is little chance of Ruddy ever getting into the first team with Patricio there. The move seems to fit both sides perfectly.
Having played, managed and won titles in the Eredivisie, maybe it’s time for Cocu to start looking in the division for possible recruitments. Bijlow is an exciting young Dutch goalkeeper that Cocu is undoubtably aware of. The 21-year-old plays for Feyenoord and made 16 appearances last season, keeping five clean sheets.
However, the young man hasn’t yet made an appearance for the first team this season and might consider Derby a good place to get regular first team football under a man he will know, and no doubt admire, in Cocu.