Derby County suffered defeat once again on Saturday afternoon, losing 2-1 at home to Birmingham City.

This can be said of many games lately, but the Rams really needed to win this one. It looked great at first as Colin Kazim-Richards found the net, but Derby fell apart after the break.

Lukas Jutkiewicz bagged a second-half brace to seal a 2-1 win for the Blues, and Derby’s only saving grace is that both Rotherham United and Sheffield Wednesday also lost.

Brentford v Derby County - Sky Bet Championship
BRENTFORD, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Derby County’s Interim Manager Wayne Rooney with technical director Steve McClaren look on before the Sky Bet Championship match between Brentford and Derby County at Brentford Community Stadium on December 9, 2020 in Brentford, England. (Photo by Ashley Western/MB Media/Getty Images)

Derby are still mired in the relegation battle though, and Wayne Rooney finds himself under real pressure with the Rams hovering precariously above the bottom three.

Rooney was also the source of a rumour on Friday, as The Telegraph claimed that he and his coaching staff had ‘sidelined’ technical director Steve McClaren.

 

Rooney had allegedly decreased McClaren’s input and influence on tactics, even though Derby remain adamant that he isn’t part of the coaching staff.

Rotherham United v Derby County - Sky Bet Championship
ROTHERHAM, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 19: Derby County Technical Director, Steve McClaren and Interim Manager, Wayne Rooney talk outside the stadium following the postponement of the Sky Bet Championship match between Rotherham United and Derby County at AESSEAL New York Stadium which was due to take place on December 19, 2020 in Rotherham, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Rooney was asked to respond to the rumours after Saturday’s defeat, and he told BBC Radio Derby that he thinks the claims are ‘a load of rubbish’.

Rooney highlighted how important McClaren is to the Derby setup and is such an important source of advice, so can’t understand where the rumours are coming from.

“Steve came in as a Technical Director, the team selection is mine, the training sessions are mine to make,” said Rooney. “Steve has never had any input in the training sessions we do or the team we select.”

“He’s very important to us. I get advice from Steve on a load of things, so I think the article is a load of rubbish,” he added.

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