The American is on the verge of taking control of the East Midlands side following a gruelling eight months at Pride Park, with the relegated side entering administration last September and encountering many obstacles in their quest to secure a new owner.
However, all hurdles have now been removed and although this takeover isn’t set to be formally announced today, tomorrow looks set to be the day when the club are finally in Kirchner’s hands.
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This will be a significant milestone for the Rams who will finally be able to agree new contracts with their players, with those out-of-contract being left in limbo regarding their futures because of their inability to tie players down to fresh deals previously.
Although some players including Tom Lawrence may leave to leave amid interest from Premier League and Championship sides, the majority of the first-team squad want to remain at Pride Park beyond the summer.
This is a major boost for manager Wayne Rooney who already has a threadbare squad at this stage, even without further departures.
And though the East Midlands outfit will be restricted in what they can offer their players, Kirchner believes contract talks are going well, posting: “(Contract talks are going) good from what I hear, but I’m not directly involved. I leave that to the people who know what they are doing.”
Although there should be excitement at the prospect of an upcoming rebuild, keeping some of their existing first-teamers will also be important to maintain some form of on-field stability at Pride Park.
Many of these players have fully earned a new deal for their contributions to the cause during the 2021/22 season, coming close to survival and performing well despite the odds being firmly stacked against them.
Their first priority has to be getting the likes of Curtis Davies and Ryan Allsop tied down to fresh terms, with both forming a key part of the Rams’ spine last term and performing admirably in the second tier.
With this, you would certainly back them to stand out in League One and it would be a real coup if they were able to keep both with second-tier interest in their signatures.
Unfortunately, it may be unrealistic to extend Max Bird and Jason Knight’s contracts at this stage because of the fact they will be competing in the third tier next season – and will not be guaranteed to return to the second tier at the first time of asking.
In fact, it would be a major achievement considering the summer rebuild they face.