Ian Holloway has revealed that he thinks Derby County boss Phillip Cocu is a “magnificent man” and that he “would have died to have played for him”.
Cocu took over at Pride Park in the summer after Frank Lampard left to join Chelsea and has had a tough start.
His Derby side are currently 19th in the Championship, with just seven points from seven games, and now travel to Elland Road to face top-of-the-table Leeds United.
Writing in his column for the Mirror, Holloway revealed he is a big fan of the Dutchman and that he believes he will come good with the Rams.
He said: “The minute Phillip Cocu took the Derby job, he was under pressure.
“I had the pleasure of speaking to him two weeks ago and what a magnificent man. The way he is and the philosophy he has got. He is a joy and I really hope he is given time.
“Having met the man, I would have died to have played for him. I watched a training session that he took and it was so professional it was unbelievable.
“Taking the Derby job–you can’t kid yourself. Lampard almost got them up and has got himself the Chelsea job off the back of it. But the longer they don’t get up, the more pressure that job is going to carry.
“The club is ready for it and the fans are expectant. For me, it is only a matter of time and sometimes you have to show patience.
“I hope he is given long enough because I was thoroughly impressed with the man.”
Holloway is a very experienced manager who has won promotion from the Championship in the past, so it should be encouraging for Rams fans that he is a big believer in Cocu.
The Dutchman has not had the start he will have wanted and pressure is building on him.
The Leeds game looks a tough test but it also presents a big opportunity.
Derby could really kick-start their season with a win and send a message of intent to the rest of the league.