While new coach Thomas Christiansen gets familiar with his new gig at Leeds United, Victor Orta and the rest of the staff need to be hard at work finding a new striker for the club. While there are plenty of options that have already proven themselves in the Championship, The Daily Mail is reporting that Christiansen may be able to convince his new boss to sign someone who he tried to sign while at APOEL, former Blackburn, Nottingham Forest, Birmingham City, Blackpool, and Olympiakos striker Matt Derbyshire.
Derbyshire has spent most of his career in English football, however he spent last season at APOEL’s fierce rivals AC Omonia Nicosia where he was the leading scorer in the Cypriot First Division, scoring 24 goals in 33 league appearances for the club. Christiansen was apparently a fan of the 31 year old player and tried to sign him for APOEL, but the rivalry between the two clubs made any such move impossible.
While it’s nice to have a rumor about an English player coming home, Derbyshire had better come cheap. He’s on the wrong side of 30 and despite showing promise in the England U21 team and for Blackburn Rovers, he never panned out to be the star striker that was hoped of him when he broke through at the Lancashire club.
His last season in English football saw him playing for Rotherham United in 2015-16, where he scored a total of eight goals, and even got a red card in a 2-1 loss at home to Leeds United in April of 2016. The year before that, he managed to score 10 goals in all competitions for Rotherham, which was a career high for him before moving to Cyprus. In fact, he scored more goals last season in Cyprus than he did in 86 matches in all competitions for Blackburn Rovers.
If he’s available on a free, then it wouldn’t be the worst idea in the world to bring in a veteran, but if Derbyshire is expected be anything other than a sub or someone to play in cup games, then it’s a bad move. Derbyshire isn’t good enough anymore to be a regular starter in the Championship, and while he scored a ton of goals in Cyprus, his goal-scoring record shows that he shouldn’t be relied on to be anything more than a secondary option at this point in his career.