Derby County supporters have taken to Twitter to criticise Tom Lawrence’s performance during the 0-0 draw at Preston North End.
The Rams battled to a point against a Preston side who had previously scored in every home game this season. On reflection, it was a decent result with what manager Frank Lampard would view as a makeshift side.
But performance levels across the board weren’t great, especially from those who Derby fans know can produce more.
Lawrence arrived at Pride Park from Leicester City in the summer of 2017 for an initial £5 million fee. With Tom Ince departing for Huddersfield Town just weeks before, Lawrence has been viewed as his direct replacement.
Unfortunately for the Wales international, he hasn’t managed to reach Ince’s level on a consistent basis and supporters are growing tired of his apparent inability to learn from his basic mistakes.
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How Tom Lawrence frustrated the Derby County fans:
According to Whoscored, Lawrence managed three shots without hitting the target and recorded just one key pass. Moreover, he was Derby’s most wasteful player, being dispossessed twice and having two unsuccessful touches.
Most of the criticism aimed at Lawrence is due to his decision-making. The 25-year-old can be naïve in possession, while he often has tunnel vision where better-placed teammates are ignored or used as decoys.
During his time at Derby, Lawrence has managed a total of 10 goals and seven assists in 55 Championship games. However, the bulk of those came under former manager Gary Rowett. Under the guidance of Lampard, he has managed just four goals and zero assists, suggesting he has taken a backwards step from last term.
Lawrence, however, was the subject of reported interest during January, with Lampard telling Sky Sports: “I think there was an enquiry for Tom. Top players, with the attributes of Tom, will always take interest from other clubs.
“It’s of no interest to me because Tom’s such an important player for us, and the same from his part. Tom Lawrence won’t be leaving.”
It seems the former Manchester United youth still has a big part to play at Pride Park. Derby fans will be hopeful that in time Lawrence can polish off his game and start to produce on a more consistent basis.