Derby County goalkeeper Kelle Roos has said the East Midlands side ‘played some great stuff at times’ against Manchester United on Saturday, in an interview with RamsTV.
Wayne Rooney’s side fell to a narrow 2-1 defeat to his former club at the weekend, but there were plenty of reasons for Derby fans to be hopeful after seeing their display against Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men.
Ravel Morrison proved to be a big hit with the Derby faithful with some neat touches and a creative spark, with fellow trialist Sone Aluko also going on to make a good impression in his maiden start at Pride Park.
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This promising performance comes after a turbulent few months in the East Midlands, with their transfer embargo, key departures and ownership uncertainty engulfing Rooney’s side in chaos this pre-season.
Despite the manager’s best attempts to bring in trialists and work with his squad in the past fortnight since their return, this has inevitably had a huge impact on their preparations for the 2021/22 campaign and the 35-year-old faces the prospect of starting next term without a recognised centre-back.
Andre Wisdom and Curtis Davies are both out of contract despite both still training with the Rams, whilst former loanee Matt Clarke has opted to join second-tier rivals West Bromwich Albion.
These lack of signings are due to their embargo – and this has placed Derby in further turmoil after only just escaping the drop on the final day of last season.
However, goalkeeper Roos is firmly fixated with on-field matters and liked what he saw of his team on Saturday, saying: “I think we played some great stuff at times. When you play against a Premier League giant they can punish you, but at times I thought we looked good.
“We are working on something new here now and it is taking good shape. We just need some time.
“We need to start believing in ourselves as well. We did not come here today to just roll over and have a great day against Manchester United.
“We wanted to do our thing and play some good football. I think we showed that.”
Roos seems to have retained a real sense of professionalism throughout pre-season despite off-the-field matters affecting their status on the pitch – and this is exactly the type of character in the dressing room you want in a situation like this.
Ironically, the goalkeeping position is one area they don’t need to improve in, even with Scott Carson’s departure.
David Marshall and Roos are two good options to have but they desperately need to strengthen other positions and without the green light from the EFL to make moves, they face a very difficult season ahead.
Even signing some of the trialists from yesterday would go a long way in helping the Championship side. Phil Jagielka could be a part of a short-term solution to their centre-back crisis after playing at the weekend.
But as well as they played on Saturday, they need quite a few signings if they want to be competitive in the second tier next season.