Three goals in three games; Exeter City's Ollie Watkins could be Derby County's problem-solver

Derby manager Steve McClaren applauds fans after the game

The Exeter City foward has been in prolific form of late - no wonder Derby County want him.

Ollie Watkins of Exeter City (L) scores their second goal

If Derby County are to make a better fist of challenge for promotion next season, it’s clear where they must strengthen in the summer, as reported by The Sun. A lack of consistent goalscorers has hampered their progress all season and, as it stands, only six teams in the league have rippled the net fewer than their 39 times.

However, while their midfielders have been surprisingly wasteful, Bradley Johnson, Will Hughes and Craig Bryson netting just five times between them, the goal threat from the flanks has been borderline non-existent barring the excellent Tom Ince.

Johnny Russell and Ikechi Anya have just one apiece while Abdoul Camara is stuck on zero. However, The Sun reports that Derby are at least taking steps to overcome this shortfall, with a bid of £2 million prepared for Exeter City’s jet-heeled forward Ollie Watkins.

Albeit plying his trade in League Two, the 21-year-old’s goal laden season on the South Coast suggests he could go a long way to solving Steve McClaren’s problem. He’s scored 13 times this season, making this comfortably the most prolific campaign of his career to date.

Derby manager Steve McClaren applauds fans after the game

Watkins may have endured the odd dry spell in front of goal but he appears to be a forward who scores in bursts. A run of six in five over Christmas, including a hat-trick at Newport County, gave way to just one in seven. However, he’s now scored in three consecutive games for the first time this season and still has plenty of room to improve.

Overall, he’s a risk worth taking for Derby.

Ollie Watkins of Exeter City in action with Harry Maguire of Hull City

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