With less than two weeks left until the start of the 2021/22 championship season, most executives probably already have a vague idea of what their starting XI will look like.
Derby County boss Wayne Rooney is not in such a privileged position.
Wayne Rooney’s squad is tired right now / Alex Pantling / Getty Images
The Aries have only two games left of their pre-season campaign – against Real Betis and Notts County – before their curtain-raising against Huddersfield on 7 August.
The club is currently involved in a legal battle with EFL following allegations that they have not complied with the Financial Fair Play rules, the fallout of which has resulted in them being placed in a transfer embargo until they can revise their accounts for 2016, 2017 and 2018.
Rooney has already admitted that he will not be able to put a team to his team’s first championship match if the embargo is not lifted, so the news Jason Knight will be out for up to 12 weeks after a training ground injury is the last. he needs right now.
And worst of all? Rooney is the one who caused the injury.
The Derby boss recently revealed that the talented midfielder could be out for almost three months after choosing an ankle in training, but The Telegraph now reports that it was Rooney himself who caused the injury after entering a 50-50 challenge with kids.
Rooney has been forced to take part in his side’s training sessions too late due to the lack of players at the club, and the previous Manchester United attack apparently still has the competitive distance he became synonymous with throughout his playing days.
Jason Knight is the latest Derby accident / James Williamson – AMA / Getty Images
Derby have just nine senior players available for them with less than two weeks left until their Championship opener – two of whom are goalkeepers – and the loss of Knight is another big blow to their preparations for the season.
If the above-mentioned embargo is not lifted, Rooney will probably be forced to put his trust in the club’s academy members, as the Rams are apparently already on their way to another relegation battle that hinders a small miracle.