This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Derby County could be set for a major summer if their prospective new owner Erik Alonso is able to complete his takeover of the club and key decisions will need to be made over the futures of key players and club figures.
Alonso has opened up on his intentions at Derby should he takeover the club and has told Sky Sports that he would be looking to try and get the club to challenge for promotion to the Premier League. He has also suggested that he would be prepared to spend around £20 million to sign a quality player if that is what it took. While he also claimed he would spend £150 million if that was needed for promotion.
That is the sort of message that Wayne Rooney will be wanting to hear heading into the summer transfer window. The Rams boss though will need to improve results in the remaining matches of the campaign to ensure they survive the drop and also that he is in a strong position to stay on as manager.
Rooney has done a solid enough job so far and made a really strong start to life as Derby manager during his first few months in permanent charge of the side. However, more recently performances have dipped and so have results so that will need to be addressed in the remaining matches.
Alonso has moved to clarify Rooney’s long-term future and suggested that he would be the manager that he would be working with were he to takeover the club.
We asked our FLW writers if they felt that keeping Rooney on as manager was a wise decision for Alonso to make…
I think if there were ever any considerations of parting company with Rooney this early into his reign it would have been sheer lunacy.
Since being appointed permanent manager in January, Derby’s form has been up and down for sure, but seven wins out of 18 matches isn’t terrible.
Rooney is still learning on the job – he was thrown in at the deep end when he least expected it and he’s getting to grips with the management game with every passing day.
England’s leading scorer being at the club as manager will probably entice players to come to the Rams as well, so he’s more than the manager in that sense, and he deserves a real chance to get the club pushing for the play-offs next season.
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This is a bit of a no-brainer for me.
While Derby County have endured a really tough season this term I think it’s hard to put the blame at Wayne Rooney’s door.
Takeover speculation has been a huge distraction during the duration of this term, but hopefully that will be ending soon.
Rooney has certainly made progress during his time at the club but in truth he needs more time to make his mark and bring in some of the players who he thinks can help the club this summer.
Next season will be big for the former Manchester United man but for now it makes sense to keep him at the club.
I get the feeling that only time will tell on this one.
In the short-term, it definitely makes sense, since a change in manager this close to the end of the season and the unsettling, distracting impact that would have, is not going to help Derby as they look to ensure they avoid relegation in the next few weeks.
Indeed, it is perhaps encouraging to see an owner willing to stick with what is already in place from the football side of things when taking over a club, given it suggests they are keen to retain some stability, which can be so important for any side.
However, it cannot be denied that Derby have failed to live up to expectations so far this season by a long way, and while it may be sensible not to make a change with so little remaining in the current campaign, if Rooney is unable to kick on from this and improve results to take Derby back to where they will feel they belong next season, then Alonso’s hand may eventually be forced here.