Derby County manager Wayne Rooney has suggested that the Rams will assess the extent of the issue picked up by Colin Kazim-Richards against Brentford, but that he feels it was only a knock.
The Rams managed to come from 2-0 down at halftime to pick up a valuable point against an in-form Brentford side who are well in the mix for a place in the Championship’s top two this campaign. However, there was some concerning news for Derby when Kazim-Richards was withdrawn from the field with around 12 minutes remaining and appeared to be holding his hip and in discomfort.
Kazim-Richards’ replacement was Tom Lawrence, who himself was only just making his first appearance since mid-December. The issue with the forward will be a concern for the Rams with Lee Gregory also set to miss out on their meeting with Stoke City on Saturday due to a condition in his loan deal. That could therefore leave them light in the forward area.
Speaking to Derbyshire Live following the draw against Brentford, Rooney revealed that Kazim-Richards was withdrawn with what he thinks is just a knock, but he also suggested that the injury will now be assessed to make sure it is not anything more than that.
He said: “I am not sure, we will see how he is. Hopefully he is OK for Saturday.
“We will assess him tomorrow (Wednesday). It is a knock, I think it is nothing more than that and hopefully he will be fine.”
This is more encouraging news than it could otherwise have been with the Rams probably having been fearing the worse with the way that Kazim-Richards left the field against Brentford looking like he was in a bit of discomfort. However, these sorts of knocks can happen when you are working as hard as the striker has been doing upfront for the Rams.
Kazim-Richards has become an invaluable part of the squad in the last few months and Derby need him to keep himself fit and firing. He has managed to score seven goals and provide two assists in his 29 Championship appearances (Sofascore) and is their top scorer four goals ahead of the second-best.
It is therefore essential that he keeps himself fit and Rooney will be very careful not to include him on Saturday against Stoke if there are any doubts over his fitness. The Rams though would ideally need him featuring if they are to try and end their winless run with them also without Gregory as well for the fixture.