Considering the absolute mess that Derby County are currently in away from the pitch, the results that Wayne Rooney’s Rams side have been picking up in the Championship so far this season have been rather impressive.
Indeed, while a win, two draws and a loss are by no means groundbreaking returns in normal circumstances, considering the 35-year-old manager has just 17 fit outfield players to pick from, the fact that Derby are currently sitting comfortably in midtable is a rather remarkable feat.
The club’s most recent result, a 0-0 draw with a very solid Middlesbrough side, while perhaps not being the most exciting game in Derby’s history, was yet further evidence that Rooney is indeed a very steady hand on the wheel of a rather unpredictable ship.
However, while there were a number of impressive performances in the Derby ranks on Saturday, there was one player who caught the eye for all the wrong reasons – Louie Sibley.
Indeed, over his 64 minutes on the pitch, the 19-year-old managed just one shot, completed 11 of his 16 attempted passes and failed to find his man with his one attempted cross and his two attempted long balls.
The £2.7m-rated midfielder also gave away possession of the ball on 12 occasions, lost all 11 of his duels and touched the ball a grand total of 25 times – 12 times fewer than the Derby County goalkeeper, Kelle Roos.
As such, while Rooney does not exactly have a wealth of options waiting to replace Sibley in his squad, should the 19-year-old wish to keep his spot in the 35-year-old’s starting XI going forwards, he will certainly have to up his game in his side’s Carabao Cup clash with Sheffield United on Tuesday night.