Derby County manager Wayne Rooney has insisted that Phil Jagielka has a lot to potentially offer the Rams should they manage to sort out a deal with the defender this summer.
The Rams have been given permission by the EFL to bring in as many as five players to bolster their squad ahead of the new Championship season. That comes after the transfer embargo placed on them this summer has been relaxed and that should enable Rooney to finally make a couple of additions.
Jagielka has been one of the many players that have been training with the Rams and featuring in their pre-season matches so far this summer.
That comes with the defender having been released by Sheffield United in the summer and with the Rams desperately in need of adding to their defensive options heading into the new campaign.
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Speaking to Derbyshire Live, Rooney insisted that the defender still has plenty of life left in him yet despite being at the back end of his career with him potentially indicating that he would be a strong addition to his current squad.
He said: “Obviously experience.
“Jags I know, and I played with him for both club and country. I know what he brings and I am sure you saw against Salford, I don’t think he lost a header.
“He is a fantastic player and he’s still got a little life in him yet!”
These comments would suggest that there is a good chance that Rooney will look to offer Jagielka a contract with the Rams this summer if he is able to do so.
The experienced defender would be able to provide some much-needed support to their existing defensive options and he would be motivated to prove that he can still perform to a high standard.
The 38-year-old has not played the most football over the last two campaigns with Sheffield United, but he still did make an impact from the bench on a couple of occasions. In the Championship, the defender is still likely to be an effective performer due to his ability to read the game.
The concern would be whether he could be relied upon at this stage in his career to play week in week out in such a demanding league as the Championship.
However, at this stage, the Rams are not really in a position to pick and choose their most ideal additions. It would be worth a gamble on his fitness to try and provide some added experience and support for their defence.