7th November 2019
It doesn’t seem five minutes since I last sat down to write to you all, however it was July, and as the festive season approaches it is high time I did so again.
Last time I pondered what the new season would bring and I thought a mid-table position would be the case as the new management team settled in. However, if we thought a quiet and uneventful period may ensue, how wrong we all were!
Whilst the on-field performances have been mediocre at best, it is the off-field shenanigans which have really made the headlines for all the wrong reasons. It is not for me to lambast the culprits, nor to judge the actions of the courts and the football club which followed, particularly as some issues are still ongoing, suffice to say the whole matter has once again dragged the club’s name through the mud. How many times has that happened over the years? But as Rams fans, would we want it any other way? The club has always been shrouded in controversy, I guess it beats being dull and out of the limelight.
Back on the field, the performances have ranged from the abject (Brentford, Charlton), to the just about acceptable, and a few in between. Our good home results of late (albeit with some good fortune), have perhaps shielded Mr Cocu from some more severe criticism as he strives to find a winning formula and some sort of consistency. I do feel some sympathy for the man as he has had to deal with some issues within his first few months in charge that some managers will never face throughout their career. I genuinely believe that, like it or not, he is here for the long term, surely any compensation package would take us towards the dreaded FFP limits with three and a half years left to run on his contract. Therefore we may just have to grit our teeth and accept that the next year or so may not be as exciting as we would like. Of course, Mr Rooney is due to arrive shortly, could this be the catalyst needed to propel us towards a promotion push, or like so many of our previous expensive investments, will it prove to be a costly flop?
As I write we sit four points below the playoff places and Forest who we play this coming weekend. Yet we are 15th in the table which shows once again just how close the Championship is. Any team showing any kind of consistency can shoot up the table, likewise a bad run of form would mean a rapid drop in the other direction. The standings could look very different after the busy festive program.
Speaking of which, although a little early, on behalf of myself and the committee, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Don’t forget our Christmas Raffle, we will be selling tickets on the upcoming home game buses and on the night at our Christmas dinner. This year we are raising money for the Me&Dee charity which provided holidays for families suffering life limiting conditions, in and around the Derby area.
Martin Plant – Chairman