Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe has told the Daily Echo that Derby County and Middlesbrough target Jack Simpson needs experience and regular playing time.

Sky Sports claim Derby County, Middlesbrough and Stoke City are keen on him.

(Photo by Robin Jones – AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images).

Simpson has made just one Premier League start for Bournemouth this season. At 23, he is a young player who has little experience of playing on a regular basis.

Speaking to the Daily Echo, Howe admits Simpson needs to be playing more and suggested he backs him to succeed whether that means going out on loan.

He is a player of huge potential and promise but is coming to an age where he probably feels he needs regular football. It’s obviously got to be right for us and for him. He does have everything – the only thing missing for Jack is the experience that a lot of the other players have. I back him to get there whether that’s with us, in terms in getting in our team, or maybe looking out on loan.

Derby’s quest for a new cental defender continues:

Simpson stands at 6ft 3inch and is described as a ball-playing centre-back.

Derby County boss Phillip Cocu has made a new central defender a top priority this month. The sacking of Richard Keogh has left the Rams light at the back.

Curtis Davies, 34, and Brighton and Hove Albion loanee Matt Clarke are the current first-choice defenders. An injury to either, however, leaves Derby in a spot of bother.

Leicester City’s Filip Benkovic (Daily Mail) and Tottenham Hotspur’s Cameron Carter-Vickers (TEAMtalk) have also been linked with a move to the Championship club.

Simpson would seemingly fit the type of player Derby are after. The Rams, however, reportedly face competition from Middlesbrough and Stoke City for his signature.

(Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images).

Boro and Stoke are both just below Derby the table. The trio are keen to bolster their ranks before the deadline and avoid being sucked into a potential relegation battle.

Also see: Manager open to £13m player’s departure; Derby and Bristol City reportedly keen

Also see: Derby + two Midland rivals reportedly keen on international; bids rejected

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