|Derby Ja Vu? - Rams Injuries Pile Up Before Cardiff Clash |
Fri 13th Aug 2010 14:52 by Daniel J Sewart
The news that two more of the Rams key players will both be sidelined for extended periods could once again a far too familiar tune for Rams fans.
At the start of the season the question marks hung over the ability of Commons, Leacock, Porter and Davies to come up on a regular basis for the campaign to come.
Sadly it seems some of those question marks are fast becoming full stops.
First of all Davies fell to an injury that will keep him out of the action till at least January and now it seems Porter will be missing for an extended period with his hip injury once again flaring up.
It seems Nigel Clough is fast becoming fed up with the injuries his chargers are carrying and with good reason. He sounded increasingly tetchy when he spoke to the official site after his team were knocked out of the League Cup:
"We are not sure what it is but it is something to do with his hip again or in that area. We are absolutely sick to death of it because we have had it for about a year now, him and his hip."
To make matters worse Nigel has also lost hard working defender Russell Anderson for at least a month, who struggled after picking up an injury in the first half at Elland Road. This only compounded an already worrying trend when his withdrawal meant the club was forced to play Shaun Barker before he was fully fit and ready
There is no doubt that the manager has attempted to give all of his players a chance to start with a clean slate and have them fighting fit for a clear run at a full season. But with two of the main culprits falling with only one league game played, Clough must feel his patience already fraying.
With the likes of Pearson and Addison still to return to the line up and fans holding their breath every time Commons or Leacock are met by an enthusiastic challenge, surely the clock is ticking down for many of our current squad.
I like all fans hope that most of these players can shake their injury woes of recent seasons and deliver on the potential shown at different times.
Addison, Commons and perhaps Leacock are the three that the team would benefit most from having on the park regularly. It is debatable whether Pearson, Davies and Porter can offer the Rams long term solutions in their preferred positions, come the end of the season it may be better to just cut their losses and look for alternatives.
Perhaps this crop of terminally fractured players is the reason Nigel has such a loyalty to Robbie Savage. Although not the player he once was, one thing he does provide is effort, attitude and the mental toughness to continually be available for the Rams.
No matter what your opinion of Sav young players of today could learn a lot from him as he plays through niggles and pain to pull on a Rams shirt week in, week out. Something it seems many younger players across todays football landscape are unwilling to do.
Depth and availability are two of the major issues that the club needs to address and if the first week of the season is anything to go by, preferably sooner than later. If players are not brought in on loan to cover the cracks soon or money is not made available to sign the likes of Michael Tonge who is seemingly being left to rot (a crime!) by all parties, Derby fans will not tolerate a repeat of last season.
The worst part is it seems Nigel will be the one in the firing line for what is obviously a lack of fresh investment by the owners. Hard decisions must be made soon and money made available to top up a squad that is constantly teetering on the edge.
It would be nice to build on the victory at Leeds instead of risk having it all once again dismantled.
Daniel J Sewart