1st – Sam Rush

The first door on our DCFC Advent Calendar belongs to Rams CEO Sam Rush.

To my mind, the day he walked into Derby County was the day we stopped being also-rans and began to believe and compete again.

I’ve written before that, astonishingly, I still know more than a few Rams fans who don’t like Sam and are not comfortable with his overt commercialism. Sometimes viewing his incessant, positive, public persona as a bit false.

I don’t subscribe to that at all and I’m not sure Mel Morris would even be here without the fantastic job Sam did in his first year or so at the club. There is no doubt that to have someone of this calibre, committed to our club (he’s a regular at U21 games in addition to everything else) and fighting our corner is a great thing.

Aside from being amazing at his job, if you ever speak to him, he’s also a really nice chap.


“Please stop grinning. I’ve just sacked you, you’re getting no pay off and that polo shirt is no longer yours”

Posted on December 1, 2015, in Derby County Advent Calendar 2015 and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Right on. Morris has said himself that Rush was integral to bringing him into the club. He is absolutely a hard-nosed money man and that sort of naked commercialism will always make some people uncomfortable, but to state the bleeding obvious, football is not exactly played or run in the Corinthian spirit anymore. To be successful, you need to ‘drive’ as many ‘revenue streams’ as possible ‘moving forward’. The language may be the worst Boardroom Bollocks, but the club has been transformed and is starting to blossom.

  2. Sam has been great for the club, delighted he signed up for another stretch a few weeks back.

  3. Just a quick addition – the agent fees table just released for Aug 2014 – Sept 2015 shows Derby spent just over £1m. That sounds like a lot, but in context – when you consider the amount of big transfer deals done, especially this summer, it strikes me as impressive that the Rams still leaked less out to agents than Cardiff, Fulham, Reading, QPR, Cardiff, Forest (!!!), Hull, Blackburn and financial underdogs Burnley. Think of the squad we’ve developed for the outlay compared to those other clubs and I think it’s safe to say we got a lot more bang for our buck.

  4. Remember the first time I saw Sam walking up the hump towards the away end at Oldham on a bright sunny evening in September. He was smiling and glad handing every Derby fan around and I thought what a refreshing difference from his predecessor who always seemed remote. He is my sort of guy and I think he has done well for the club.

    • Thanks all for the comments. Great point on the agents fees thing. I’m not sure what period it covered but certainly for us to be mid table in that league based on any point do the last two years is a great achievement.

      With regard to his predecessor, I think he was just a marketeer who got seconded to the commercial team by accident and was left there until someone in the USA remembered they were supposed to replace him with a real professional.

  5. Bouncing Cheque

    Forgive for not sharing in the love-in. Yes, our better period coincided with Sam Rush’s arrival, but there was a change of policy, I think, with the then owners being persuaded some additional finance (for loans) was necessary for the side to make the next step instead of treading water/mid-table.

    Nigel Clough put in the groundwork (dull & unspectacular) and quite a few key players from his time remain (Keogh, Hendrick, & Martin). I think sometimes football, like life, is about luck & timing. For instance, Billy Davies came in & was given resources & Clough had to deal with the mess left behind by him & Jewell (£20-£30 million spent/wasted). Now Paul Clement is the beneficiary of a new investor/benefactor. Again, it’s luck & circumstances because Mr Morris was able to sell shares and receive a great deal of money, so he was in a position to take a wider role and responsibility now. It was clear GSE could not provide the funding and a deal proved to be in both of their mutual interests. I e-mailed Andy Appleby a couple of times, such as in 2011 when we were in free-fall (before ‘the big money’ signings of Ward & Robinson: I don’t think Clough had £10m in his entire tenure, let alone one sitting).
    Mr Appleby was courteous and bemoaned the fact about (high) wages in football.

    As for Sam Rush, he transformed the club’s scouting and transfer policy after McClaren’s appointment. It is telling that the hit rate under Chris Evans was poor and two years later, he left. Similarly, the much derided Development Squad under Clough with the likes of Michael Hoganson. Instead, we signed lots of young European talent, none of whom have made an impact. According to Colin Gibson, we were now fishing in a sea, not a pond. Hmmm. I think Mel Morris has decided we need caviar, with Bradford & Cockney accents.

    Yes, there’s no denying that Rush has made an impact, but the groundwork was put in by Clough and it has been topped and tailed by the investment put in by Mel Morris, who is now the key figure at the club. Few managers are going to fail with that level of support in the Championship, by that I mean a club should at least make the play-offs under competent guidance.

    • Thanks for the detailed comment. Every opinion on here is welcomed and valid, especially if it’s as well put as this.

      Based on this, Looking forward to your comments on Mondays post which I wrote this morning. #teaser

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