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Leacock Packing His Baggies? And New Signings Return!
Leacock Packing His Baggies? And New Signings Return!
Saturday, 1st Jan 2011 07:57 by Daniel J Sewart

With the transfer window open the rumours are already swirling and a surprising report is that West Brom are interested in the services of Dean Leacock.

Originally a Premiership player for Fulham, Dean Leacock has battled a rollercoaster ride of injuries and fluctuating form.

If West Brom is truly interested then the review given by his own manager after the Forest game will not have done his chances of returning to the top flight much good.

Nigel Clough was blunt in his assessment of Dean and Green in particular:

“There was a lack of desire to keep the ball out of our net, individually and collectively, especially individually. Dean Leacock, for an experienced defender with Premier League experience, and an international midfielder in Paul Green, offered us absolutely nothing."

“You talk about our young players and their inexperience, but you look for those experienced players to show us a little bit and they gave us nothing. We have a very young squad – no player in the 18 was over 30 – and that’s when you need the so-called experienced players to come through for you.”

After that spray you would not be surprised if Clough bundled Deano into his car boot and personally drove him to Albion. The interest (if real) is baffling, perhaps Giles Barnes has got tired of combing his hair and asked for a friend to be brought in?

The Baggies are desperate for reinforcements as Gonzalo Jara and Gabriel Tamas are serving bans and Jonas Olsson and Paul Scharner are struggling with injury and illness.

With defensive issues and injuries to other key players the Rams would need to line – up some replacements quick smart if they were to even entertain letting Leacock go.

Perhaps Miles Addison could be just that replacement as they both he and Davies are back in the squad and looking to gain fitness and confidence after a long spell on the sidelines. Along with Chris Porter the gaffer will be hoping they are akin to 'new' signings.

Clough is excited to have them back but is trying to temper the expectation in regards to the impact they could have immediately, especially in the case of Miles and Steve:

"Steven's' return was a big boost for all of us, even given the arduous circumstances on the field at the time. We can't expect miracles from Steven immediately.”

"The fact that he is back less than six months after such a serious injury is exceptional in itself, but it will be a while before we he gets anywhere need the standard he is truly capable of.”

"The same goes for Miles too. Prior to being blighted by his foot injury, Miles had just broken into the England under-21 squad. By definition this made him one of the best young central defenders in the country.”

"It has been enormously frustrating for both him and us to see his progress and growth as a player halted for over an entire year and it is going to take him some time more to get back to full match strength and sharpness. However, we believe in Miles we have someone who posses all the attributes to be a top player at this level and even beyond; it is our job to help him achieve that here at Derby County.”

"We have two talented, young, hungry players who can have a real impact on our team; we can't wait until they fully hit their stride again."

Chris Porter will make his first start in eight months now that Luke Moore has found the door which means the Rams line up could take a new look very quickly."

Clough was positive about his inclusion when talking to the DET:

"It was good to get Chris on again in the Forest game and he will start at Preston," said manager Nigel Clough. He is looking stronger and when he came on, he put in our best cross of the game when he slid the ball across the six-yard box.

"It was something our Republic of Ireland midfielder failed to do in his three attempts and Dean Leacock (whack again Deano!!) in the one attempt he had to put the ball into a dangerous area."

Whether or not the three returning chargers can revive the Rams fortunes remains to be seen. All have shown enough in the past to point to making an impact but staying fit and on the park is the main challenge they all face, especially Porter and Davies.

Derby fans will be praying that the sweeping changes to the clubs fitness regime will reap the same rewards it already has with Kris Commons.

Another result of that standard would be considered a massive bonus for the remainder of the season.

Anything less may just be considered par for the course!


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