Derby County’s survival hopes were dealt another blow last week as they fell to defeat away to Watford on Friday night, with goals from Joao Pedro and ex-Ram Will Hughes dealing a decisive blow during the first half an hour of the contest in Hertfordshire.
That result saw the Rams fall down to 19th place, meaning that Wayne Rooney’s side are still very much looking over their collective shoulders ahead of the midweek round of fixtures.
A home game against fellow strugglers Huddersfield Town tomorrow does offer an instant reprieve as County continue to struggle for his consistency despite picking up three wins in their last five games.
Victory for Derby could well see them pull clear of the bottom three, with there currently being a four point gap between the Rams and Rotherham United in 22nd place.
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In the meantime, we’ve taken the time to round-up all the latest news that has been swirling around Pride Park…
Manchester United close to triple deal
Manchester United are said to be close to sealing a deal to sign three teenagers from Derby’s academy system, with the Daily Mirror reporting that the two clubs are in talks over a deal which could see the Rams make a profit of around £750,000.
All three players are said to be aged under 15, with County also said to have been open to negotiation over the transfer fee as they seek to improve the financial situation at Pride Park.
This wouldn’t be the first time that the club have sold some of their best youngsters, with highly-rated 16-year-old Kaide Gordon having left to join Liverpool earlier this month.
Mike te Wierik speaks out
Former Derby centre back Mike te Wierik has had his say on his spell with the Rams, with the defender telling Football Oranje that he felt largely let down during his time in England.
Having originally signed for the club last summer from FC Groningen, te Wierik was only afforded six first team appearances before being sold back to the same club last month after falling out of favour under first Phillip Cocu and more recently Rooney.
Speaking about his stint with the Rams, the Dutchman had this to say:
“I just got screwed.
“Choices were made, but what they were based on I wonder. There were people who said to me: sit down and take your money. That money was indeed good, but that’s not how I work.
“After having barely played for almost a year – first through corona and later through that stuff at Derby – I feel that I’m getting back into the right rhythm now. “
Injury boost ahead of Huddersfield clash
Centre back Matt Clarke is set to available to play in this week’s crunch clash against Huddersfield at Pride Park, with Rooney confirming to the Derby Telegraph that the reigning Player of the Year will be back after a hip injury that sidelined him against Watford.
Speaking to the press after the game on Friday, the Derby boss had this to say:
“Clarkey is OK. He was struggling for tonight (v Watford) but he will be available again on Tuesday.”
The Brighton and Hove Albion loanee has been almost ever present once again for the Rams, playing a part in 30 games to date this term across all competitions.
Now into his second straight loan spell with the club, Clarke has two years remaining on his contract at Brighton.