Six free agents Derby should still consider signing

Derby boss Paul Clement is finding life a lot different as a manager in the Championship than as an assistant in La Liga. The former Real Madrid coach took over the Pride Park outfit during the summer, his first test as the main man in charge.

The Rams have looked solid so far, with the joint third tightest defence in the league. It is, however, further forward where their problems seem to be.

Just seven goals so far have seen the club stagnate in 11th position, with only two wins so far. Defensive solidarity is one thing, but goals win football matches.

After utter capitulation towards the back end of last season, that saw the club remain in the Championship, the ex-PSG and Chelsea coach must push on.

The likes of Darren Bent, Chris Martin and Johnny Russell are capable of finishing off chances, but here are six free transfers Clement can look to bring in to add extra firepower…


Carlton Cole

The former West Ham is training with Celtic currently, but is still available on a free. A wealth of top flight experience, the ex-Chelsea youngster was a member of the West Ham side only last year.

He would surely be a force to be reckoned with in the Championship, able to spearhead most attacks in the division.


Central Midfield - Kevin Nolan

If goals are your problem – look no further than Kevin Nolan. Another former Hammer, he’s known up and down the country for his midfield strikes.

Though now 33-years of age, his game has never been based on searing pace. Clever movement and being in the right place and the right time is what he’s renowned for.

The ex-Bolton and Newcastle man would surely aid a promotion push.


Shola Ameobi

After leaving Newcastle United, the Nigerian international joined up with Alan Pardew at his Crystal Palace revolution. Recently released, the 31-year old could suit Derby to a tee.

Perhaps viewed as somewhat lackadaisical, over a decade of top level football suggests the striker is more potent than you might think. While he’s unlikely to dazzle fans with fancy footwork, he could certainly chip in with a few goals.


Remember when he played for England? While unlikely to excite the Derby faithful, the former Crystal Palace and Everton man could be a sensible addition.

He’s lost a yard of pace or so, but in tight games there are not many free agents you’d rather a chance drop to inside the opposition penalty area.

He’s been capped eight times for the Three Lions, and has played in a Europa League final. If you were turning up your nose at this suggestion, think again.



Not a striker, but the combative Honduran would easily slot into any Championship side.

A frustrating time at Stoke should not take away from his great work at Wigan, that saw Tottenham splash out for him.

He is a classy midfielder, fighting to win back possession as if his live depended on it. Injuries may have affected him over the last couple of years, but he is a gamble with huge pay offs.

In a gritty league like the Championship, Palacios could excel. When on song, he’s a manager’s dream – leaving nothing on the playing field.


15. Georgios Samaras

The enigmatic Greek striker hasn’t found a club since leaving West Brom last year.

Able to operate as a winger or as a traditional target man, the former Manchester City and Celtic striker could certainly provide quality in the final third for most Championship sides.

His aerial prowess could be vital, especially with Tom Ince on the wings. He’s able to dribble past defenders and create space for team-mates. With Darren Bent next to him, the two could form a fruitful partnership.