Our view: Derby should sign ex Leicester right-back Danny Simpson to solve temporary dilemma

Danny Simpson of Leicester in action during the Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Leicester City at Molineux on January 19, 2019 in Wolverhampton, United Kingdom.

Derby County are short on natural right-backs after Jayden Bogle’s injury.

Danny Simpson during the Leicester City pre-season training camp on July 13 , 2018 in Evian, France.

Derby County should consider signing free agent Danny Simpson in a bid to solve their current dilemma as Jayden Bogle’s injury has had a big effect at Pride Park.

Bogle suffered an ankle injury during Phillip Cocu’s first home game in charge against Swansea City. The talented right-back was seen wearing a protective boot at the end of the 0-0 draw.

Bogle has since missed Derby’s subsequent three matches, and his absence has prompted changes in both personnel and system as a way to cover for his natural attacking talent.

Danny Simpson, who was released by Leicester City last season, would be a natural fit and at 32 you would imagine he still has the fitness and drive to be able to provide an attacking outlet down that right flank.

 

Change in system:

Max Lowe has filled the void at right-back. The left-footed fullback has been excellent considering. However, he naturally doesn’t have the same positional sense or attacking threat as Bogle.

Cocu has in the past two games had to change systems to create more of an attacking threat. His favoured 433 doesn’t work without attacking fullbacks, so he has had to switch to three at the back.

But a 352 system isn’t what Cocu has in mind long-term. Rather than abandoning his preferred 433 early on, the Dutchman would benefit more from sticking it out with free-agent Simpson a natural solution.

Max Lowe of Derby County during the Pre-Season Friendly between Derby County v Girona at Pride Park Stadium on July 25, 2019 in Derby, England.

Scott Malone’s form:

Left-back Scott Malone has endured a tough start to the season. He was hauled off at half-time against Stoke City, and Cocu repeated the same tactical switch against Bristol City with Derby 2-0 down at the break.

Malone was at fault for City’s second goal. He was careless in possession, allowing City to nick the ball in the fullback spot and send in a cross which Josh Brownhill coolly finished off.

Most supporters want to see Max Lowe replace Malone and play in his natural position at left-back in a 433 system. That only becomes an option when Bogle returns – or if they signed a current free agent right-back.

9th February 2019, Pride Park, Derby, England; EFL Championship football, Derby Country versus Hull City; Scott Malone of Derby County sees his shot deflected by Liam Ridgewell of Hull City

Danny Simpson still has plenty to offer:

Simpson made over 100 Premier League appearances for Leicester. He won the title with the Foxes in 2016 and went on to play Champions League football a year later.

The former QPR man most likely still has another year left at a decent level, and his arrival could aid Bogle’s progression further especially on the defensive side of his game.

Danny Simpson of Leicester in action during the Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Leicester City at Molineux on January 19, 2019 in Wolverhampton, United Kingdom.

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