The 19-year-old was an unexpected regular for Derby County during the 2021/22 campaign following his arrival from Arsenal last year, with manager Wayne Rooney being forced into using some of his younger players as he contended with a transfer embargo.
Although the Manchester United legend was able to recruit Sam Baldock, Colin Kazim-Richards’ severe injury in August provided Plange with a pathway into the starting 11 and he took this chance with both hands, registering four goals and two assists in 26 league games for the Rams.
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His permanent stay at Pride Park came to an end in January though with Crystal Palace launching a £1m bid for the teenager’s services, an offer the relegated side’s administrators had little choice but to accept with the club not naming a preferred bidder to take them out of administration at that point.
Plange doesn’t seem to be in Patrick Vieira’s short-term plans though with the Frenchman keen to see the forward gain more experience out on loan – and Coventry are one side thought to be weighing up a temporary move for him in time for the 2022/23 campaign.
Although the Sky Blues already have Matt Godden, Martyn Waghorn, Fabio Tavares and Viktor Gyokeres at their disposal, the latter has been linked with a move away from the CBS Arena and 19-year-old Plange could be the man they call on to replace the Sweden international.
Gyokeres is reportedly being tracked by Fulham and Middlesbrough, with Mark Robins’ side potentially having a battle on their hands in the coming months to retain their star forward’s services.
Plange would be a decent signing for the Sky Blues – but if they are to bring him in – he should be played with a forward partner to help take pressure off the youngster to be their main goalscorer.
Taking that pressure off could make a real difference to the teenager’s performances, although you would have to say Gyokeres will need to move on if Plange is to be guaranteed regular starts at the CBS Arena.
If all of their available options are fit, Gyokeres and Godden are probably the two main candidates to start alongside each other considering their respective goal records, though there are no guarantees that the latter will be able to remain fit.
Waghorn is also a good option to have, so the Palace striker will need reassurances on his playing time before judging whether to make this move to the Midlands or not, though the chance to compete at the right end of the second-tier table will be tempting for him.
One thing is for certain though – and that’s the fact he can’t go back to playing youth football after playing a respectable role for the Rams during the 2021/22 season. Now is the time for him to build on that success under Rooney.