“They Looked Lacklustre” – Former Derby County Striker Gives Verdict After Cup Loss

Former Derby County striker David Nugent has given his view on Derby’s loss in the EFL Trophy.

Paul Warne’s side would be knocked out of the cup by League Two side Bradford City on Tuesday night, which would come as somewhat of a surprise given the Rams’ recent good form.

A Sam Stubbs strike in the 67th minute would be the only goal in the match and thus separate the two sides. Although Derby by no means put out their strongest team, neither did Bradford.

The current structure of the tournament can definitely be questioned, and perhaps the hosts didn’t give the match enough respect as a result but nonetheless it was a very disappointing performance.

It is hard to say that Bradford didn’t deserve the win away from home, with the hosts failing to register a single shot on target despite ten attempts. Perhaps second-choice keeper Josh Vickers was the only player who came out of the game with a decent performance but there could now be questions about the depth outfield that the club have.

Derby welcome Burton Albion to Pride Park on Monday night, where they’ll be looking to regain the winning thread once again. Just two points off of second-placed Bolton Wanderers and a further two to league leaders Portsmouth, automatic promotion is well within the club’s grasp this season.

A player who is no stranger to winning trophies is former Derby striker David Nugent. The now 38-year-old would make 95 appearances for the club, netting 17 times. Although he may have not won a trophy with the Rams, Nugent achieved promotion to the Premier League with Leicester in the 2013/14 season as well as winning the 2008 FA Cup with Portsmouth.

Speaking on talkSPORT last night after covering the match, Nugent heaped plenty of praise on Bradford, but did not hold back on the Rams’ performance.

“It was fully deserved. I think Bradford have been excellent to a man, every single one of them who came in to replace the players who played at the weekend. They put Derby under pressure early on with a few chances they created.

“Derby looked lacklustre and the changes they made didn’t really make an impact. Paul Warne will be really disappointed with the way the game went.

“But I’ve got to give a lot of credit to Bradford, especially the centre halves. Ash Taylor won every single header and (Sam) Stubbs got the goal.

Writer’s View

Derby’s cup loss could be a blessing in disguise as they are now allowed to fully focus on the league. Having also been knocked out of both the FA and EFL cups, there is one sole objection this season for the Rams, promotion to the Championship.

Recent form gives them a great shot of doing just that and very few teams will be wanting to travel to Pride Park, especially if they are in the play-offs. It’s a big second half of the season for Paul Warne’s men, but they seem to be in form in the league unlike a few teams around them at the minute.

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