Our view: Three disappointing home truths for Derby following Nottingham Forest defeat

A general view of the City Ground during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Bolton Wanderers at City Ground on May 5, 2019 in Nottingham, England.

Nottingham Forest defeated Derby County 3-0 in the Carabao Cup.

Derby County manager \ head coach Phillip Cocu during the Pre-Season Friendly between Derby County v Girona at Pride Park Stadium on July 25, 2019 in Derby, England.

Nottingham Forest grabbed the early East Midlands bragging rights for this season as they swept aside Derby County 3-0 in the Carabao Cup clash at the City Ground.

Goals from Albert Adomah, Joe Lolley and Joao Carvalho sent the Reds supporters home happy, while Derby fans were left to lick their wounds following their biggest defeat to Forest since that 5-2 drubbing in 2011.

Here we look at three things we’ve learned which only adds more misery for Derby fans:


Derby’s youth take a heavy beating against a strong Forest side, but was that the case?

Derby manager Phillip Cocu played several academy players in the cup victory at Scunthorpe United earlier this month. It was always likely the Dutchman was going to do the same at the City Ground.

Supporters can put the defeat down to Derby’s inexperience. Afterall, Cocu made 10 changes to the team which drew against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday. However, Forest’s average age was lower than the Rams.

It was good to see Louie Sibley and Morgan Whittaker make their first-team debuts, while 18-year-old Lee Buchanan also featured again. But Cocu also gave starts to Jamie Paterson, Cutis Davies, Graeme Shinnie, George Evans, Matt Clarke, Ben Hamer and Duane Holmes – experienced players.

Forest made eight changes to their side from the weekend. On reflection, the Reds have much more strength in depth than Derby right now and question marks must be made over the Rams' summer transfers.

Graeme Shinnie of Derby County and Joe Lolley of Nottingham Forest during the Carabao Cup Second Round between Nottingham Forest and Derby County at City Ground on August 27, 2019 in...

Where is Derby’s goal threat coming from?

Derby registered zero shots on target against Forest. There appears to be a lack of creativity throughout the Rams’ squad, with the more senior first team members also struggling.

Losing Mason Mount and Harry Wilson was a big blow. Not replacing them adequately could be Derby’s downfall this season as they look goal shy.

Cocu has been in charge of seven Derby games in all competitions this season. The Rams have only scored seven goals, and only three in open play in their last six games. It’s a worrying trend.

Jamie Paterson of Derby County battles for possession with John Bostock of Nottingham Forest during the Carabao Cup Second Round match between Nottingham Forest and Derby County at City...

Mason Bennett doesn’t have the tools to be a regular at Championship level:

Mason Bennett is a popular figure among Derby fans. He came through the academy, and he is a fan of the club. However, he is no longer a youth player showing bursts of potential.

He is 23, and he made his debut in the 2011-12 season. He made key contributions from off the bench last season. Yet, aside from energy, enthusiasm and a great attitude, there isn’t a lot of natural quality to work with.

Bennett has had chances out wide and upfront to push for a regular spot. He is a grafter. Unfortunately, only seven career goals in over 100 appearances suggests a career in the lower leagues is more in line with his ability.

Brice Samba of Nottingham Forest saves at the feet of Mason Bennett of DerbyCounty during the Carabao Cup Second Round match between Nottingham Forest and Derby County at City Ground on...

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