Derby County are still engaging in talks with Cardiff City regarding the services of James Collins despite the striker appearing in a friendly for the Bluebirds on Saturday, according to an update from Derbyshire Live.
Steve Morison’s side took on Cambridge United at the weekend – and 31-year-old Collins even managed to get on the scoresheet at the weekend as one of the Bluebirds’ only available forwards at this stage.
The former Luton Town man has suddenly become one of Cardiff’s most viable options up top with Jordan Hugill and Uche Ikpeazu both departing the club on the expiration of their loan spells at the end of last season.
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Isaac Vassell has also been released by the Welsh side, leaving the likes of Collins, Mark Harris, Isaak Davies and Max Watters as their only senior options up top, though Davies is still inexperienced at this stage.
Their forward area, however, is now a position they want to prioritise after strengthening other areas with 10 new signings already through the door at the Cardiff City Stadium, potentially boosting the Rams’ hopes of recruiting him.
The 31-year-old has been a prolific goalscorer in the past so it’s slightly surprising that Morison isn’t giving him a second chance to shine in the Welsh capital, especially with the limited number of options they have up front.
He may not be the most spectacular player on paper – but he’s a proven goalscorer and it’s not as if they will be attracting too many superstars this summer with the limited budget they have.
With the season coming up in less than three weeks too, it may be worth the Bluebirds holding on to Collins whilst they try and recruit other forwards because they risk having a very slow start to the campaign if they don’t have enough firepower.
This would be the worst possible outcome for the club that struggled massively under Mick McCarthy during the early stages of last term. In their quest to record a better finish, they will need to try and hit the ground running.
If this happens, Derby will need to look at alternative targets but they should also look to keep tabs on the 31-year-old – because he could be a real asset to have in the third tier if given a sufficient opportunity to shine.