6th – The Nowhere Men
Whilst Paul Clement talks a lot about “the squad” and tactical flexibility, it’s very clear he now knows his strongest team and his favoured formation.
The associated positive results have subsequently resulted in a gang of very senior players who are simply not getting a look in.
Poor Alex Pearce is the main example. It’s now reasonably well known that Keogh (and Johnny Russell for the record) were on their way when Paul Clement arrived. PC promptly blocked both sales but even he couldn’t have foreseen Keogh’s biblical renaissance. Let’s not forget that Pearce is a full international and was captain of Reading so he isn’t a youngster waiting for a chance or an old head providing cover (see Baird). No Rams fan can have an opinion on Alex as we simply haven’t seen him play and are unlikely too anytime soon.
Next up we have Daz Bent. I recently heard Mel Morris quite rightly say the hardest thing with signing any new striker for Derby is selling them the fact they are Chris Martins deputy. Surely Bent knew this, so why he signed in the first place is beyond me. Bent is a goalscorer supreme but is never going to be more than a last 10 minute “try and sneak us a goal” merchant in this current Rams team. Don’t be surprised to see him go on loan to a Prem struggler (Newcastle anyone?).
Dawkins clearly isn’t in Clements plans. A talented player for sure who has had his moments, but seems to have had a couple of personal issues that have derailed him. He’s gone.
Ryan Shotton is so out the picture I almost forgot to include him here. Had an absolutely awful second half of last season and his brief cameos this year have done nothing to persuade anyone he’s changed. He will go somewhere in January and will have no shortage of offers of a lift.
Finally there’s Bucko. Clement talks about him a lot and I appreciate he’s coming back from an operation. However, whilst Jake will always be a hero to most Rams fans, I don’t expect him to play for the first team again. Sorry everyone, that’s harsh but true.
Posted on December 6, 2015, in Derby County Advent Calendar 2015 and tagged alex pearce, darren bent, derby county, Jake Buxton, ramspace, ryan shotton, Simon Dawkins, the rams. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.