Wayne Rooney: Derby County boss expects new signings before season opener

Wayne Rooney
Wayne Rooney has been in charge of Derby since they parted company with Phillip Cocu in November 2020

Derby County boss Wayne Rooney is confident he will bring in new signings this week following the easing of the club's transfer embargo.

The English Football League ruled that the Rams can sign free agents, subject to strict wage limits being applied.

A number of trialists including Phil Jagielka, Sone Aluko, Ravel Morrison, Richard Stearman and Sam Baldock have been involved in pre-season training.

None, though, played in Sunday's 2-0 friendly win over Notts County.

"I'm preparing a team for the first league game on Saturday and I had to go into this game with the contracted players to make sure they're all ready," Rooney told BBC Radio Derby.

"On the flip side, I am confident that within the next 48 hours, we'll bring players in."

  • Listen to BBC Radio Derby's full Wayne Rooney interview here.

The embargo was amended after the EFL accepted Derby's view that it would be unfair to class academy players who featured in their FA Cup loss at Chorley last season as being of 'professional standing'.

"I'd like as many [signings] as possible, but there's still a little bit of work to be done," said Rooney.

"I've no worries about the players coming in. I've built a great atmosphere on the training ground.

"Not having the players in and signed can be a bit stressful for everyone but they've been in, they've been training with us, they've got the minutes in the previous [pre-season] games and they'll be ready if we can get these deals done this week."

Derby avoided relegation last season with a 3-3 draw against Sheffield Wednesday in their final game and start the new campaign with a home match against Huddersfield Town on Saturday.

Eiran Cashin and new skipper Tom Lawrence scored the goals against Notts County, the latter with a Panenka penalty.

Asked whether he was happy with that type of spot-kick, Rooney replied: "As long as he scores - but I remember I did one last year at Fulham.

"He wants to take them. I'm sure there will be a time when he misses, that's normal, but I'm happier with an attacking player taking them."

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