Wayne Rooney has revealed that Martyn Waghorn was left out of the Derby County squad today because of his lack of effort in training.
The Rams fell to a 1-0 defeat at Stoke City earlier on, with the result leaving them nervously looking over their shoulder in the battle to stay in the Championship.
One surprising aspect of today’s game was Waghorn not making the bench, which meant Colin Kazim-Richards lead the line despite clearly not being 100% fit.
Speaking to The Athletic reporter Ryan Conway after the game, Rooney confirmed that there was no injury for the ex-Rangers man, instead it was totally down to his showing in training building up to the trip to Staffordshire.
“Players have bad training sessions. That happens. But what I can’t accept is if the player doesn’t try. I can’t afford to carry players.”
The rookie boss also described Waghorn’s actions as ‘unacceptable’, although he insisted that the attacker can force his way back into his plans if he starts performing.
Derby are back in action against Luton after the international break.
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For Rooney to not pick Waghorn in the squad when his first-choice striker is not fit shows just how poor Waghorn must’ve been, so he is understandably livid.
Some will argue that he made the wrong choice, evident by today’s result and a lack of cutting edge. However, standards need to be high and he shouldn’t let players get away with not giving their all.
So, this is a strong message to Waghorn and the rest of the squad. Things need to change quickly or the gap to the bottom three will continue to shorten.
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