Fikayo Tomori was without doubt Derby County’s outstanding player during his side’s disappointing 1-0 defeat at home to Millwall.
The Rams headed into the clash with the Lions knowing a victory would take them back into the playoffs. After the FA Cup defeat last weekend, attentions can now fully turn to the Championship promotion race.
But for some reason or another, Derby once again struggled to get going against poorer opposition.
The Rams have beaten West Bromwich Albion, Norwich, Manchester United and Southampton on their travels this season. But when up against Championship strugglers Bolton, Rotherham United, Ipswich Town and Millwall, they’ve surprisingly come up short.
Millwall arrived at Pride Park having picked up just seven away points all season. Derby should have put them to the sword early on, yet they were tepid throughout and ended up coming away with nothing following Jed Wallace’s late winner.
Going forward, Frank Lampard’s side were short of ideas and too laboured in possession. They had over 70% of the ball but recorded just one shot on target and that was in stoppage time.
Fikayo Tomori’s Millwall display in numbers:
Tomori, however, should be exempt from any criticism after he put in an excellent display. He arrived at Derby on a season-long loan deal from Chelsea, and he has gradually become one of their best players.
The 21-year-old recorded three clearances, four tackles, five interceptions and six aerial duel winners. Moreover, he was brilliant on the ball, recording an 88.1% pass-accuracy rate while creating one chance.
Only four teams have conceded fewer goals than Derby this season and that is largely down to the form of Tomori and his defensive partner Richard Keogh. They hold it together for the Rams, often with little protection in-front of them and amid numerous crosses from wide areas.
Tomori’s deal at Derby expires at the end of the season. On current form, it’s unlikely the Rams will manage to get him back next term which will leave a big void to fill.
Also see: Steve McClaren’s first five signings for Derby County: Where are they now?