Cocu coy as Rooney flies homes to discuss Derby role

Date published: Tuesday 6th August 2019 9:18

Phillip Cocu was tight-lipped on reports linking Derby with a move for former England captain Wayne Rooney after his side’s 2-1 Championship victory at Huddersfield.

The DC United striker has flown into London on Tuesday morning amid links with a possible player-coach role at Pride Park.

Cocu offered few clues as to whether there was any truth in the rumours following Monday’s win.

Asked whether Rooney would get into his side after they opened their season with a victory, Cocu joked: “Who?

“I’m sorry, I can’t say (anything). There are still three days and the market’s open.

“I’ve said before that we’re not done and we’re working to get the team complete, but I cannot talk about any names at this moment.”

Cocu was probed on how a player of Rooney’s profile might fit into his squad.

Without mentioning Rooney specifically, he added: “It never depends on a player because I like to talk always about my team, not about any player.

“In my opinion the team is always the most important. Never is a player more important than the team. That’s my vision.”

Despite asserting that his coaching team is complete, Cocu replied “I don’t know” when asked if there was room for a player-coach.

Tom Lawrence scored both Derby goals at the John Smith’s Stadium as part of a terrific first-half performance from the Wales international.

His first came after a defensive error from debutant Tommy Elphick, keeping his composure to lift the ball into an empty net, while his second was a well-taken left-footed strike from the edge of the box.

“World-class goals,” Cocu said. “He’s a quality player. He shows his quality on the ball and in combinations, works hard for the team. To start the season with two goals is very impressive.”

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