Derby County manager Phillip Cocu has told RamsTV there are always different stories in transfer windows when asked about Bristol City manager Lee Johnson’s Filip Benkovic comments.

The Rams were heavily linked with a loan move for the Leicester City ace (Telegraph).

(Photo by Plumb Images/Leicester City FC via Getty Images).

Bristol City, however, won the race for his signature on deadline day. And, Johnson later told Bristol Post his side had a previous verbal agreement to sign him.

Speaking to reporters, Cocu refused to get drawn into a battle of words.

I don’t like to comment on these kinds of words. There are always different stories and opinions in transfer windows. We followed him for quite some time and in the end, he went to Bristol. In the last day of the window it was not possible for us so there is no discussion anymore.

Derby lose out in Filip Benkovic chase:

Derby’s reported interest in Benkovic first appeared in December. It seems the Rams would land him once the Foxes signed a replacement defender.

Leicester eventually managed to bring in Ryan Bennett from Wolverhampton Wanderers. The delay, however, seemingly saw Derby put on hold throughout January.

But now Lee Johnson claims Bristol City had a verbal agreement to sign him from weeks ago. If true, it means Derby’s chase of Benkovic was futile from the get-go.

The Rams have since confirmed Mike te Wierik will join in the summer. In the short-term, however, manager Phillip Cocu is left with few options to choose from.

(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images).

Andre Wisdom, Brighton and Hove Albion loanee Matt Clarke and Curtis Davies make up the options. The latter, nonetheless, turns 35 this year and isn’t a long-term solution.

Also see: Confirmed Derby County deal raises doubts over Rowett signing’s future at the club

Also see: Rival boss suggests his side worked hard to beat Derby and Stoke to £10.7m player

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