Derby County fans must have been a little nervous about next season when owner Mel Morris announced plans to cut costs and bring in a new ‘austere’ regime at Pride Park.
Since then, however, there have been no suggestions that this will stop Derby spending in pursuit of their long-awaited promotion after once again narrowly missing out on that coveted place in the Premier League.
The Daily Star reports that John Terry has already agreed to join up with his former Chelsea and England team-mate Frank Lampard in the East Midlands. 37-year-old Terry was earning £60,000 a week at Aston Villa.
And reports in The Mirror (live blog, 2.55pm) reports that Sunderland’s Paddy McNair has also emerged as a target. Though the former Manchester United man, who is also a target for Stoke and Norwich, won’t come cheap with a £5 million price-tag on his head.
Even for that fee, however, McNair could be a bargain.
Yes he did finish bottom of the Championship with Sunderland last season but he was one of the few players to emerge from the wreckage on Wearside with any credit. McNair scored four goals in his last five games of the season and there’s an argument to be made that the Black Cats would have had a much better chance of survival had he stayed fit.
McNair is young too at just 23. So with Championship transfer fees rising by the year, he could be worth double or triple that £5 million fee should he continue progressing at Pride Park.
If McNair were to arrive for £5million, he would be one of Derby's most expensive signings in history, but in the current economic climate of football, would have to be considered a bargain when you take into account the youngsters potential.