Why Damian Oko would be a smart signing for Derby County
Back in June, the Daily Mail had claimed that Derby County were interested in sign Zaglebie Lubin defender Damian Oko. However, a deal didn’t go through and he has since stayed put at the club.
A youth product of Zaglebie Lubin, Damian Oko, 22, made 33 appearances for the club’s ‘B team’ before making his first-team debut in a 2-0 defeat to Górnik Zabrze in October last year. Since then, the Polish defender made 17 appearances in his debut season for Zaglebie Lubin’s first team.
Oko has hit the ground running in the new campaign, managing two assists in 12 league games so far. With the 22-year-old impressing in the Ekstraklasa over the last 18 months, Derby County must reignite their interest in the centre-back when the transfer window reopens next month.
After narrowly missing out on promotion under Frank Lampard last season, Derby County have made an underwhelming start to their Championship campaign under Phillip Cocu.
The Rams have had a start-stop campaign which has left them currently 17th in the Championship table.
Cocu’s side are without a win in their last five matches and if their results don’t improve soon, they are in danger of being dragged into a relegation battle.
There’s still time for the team to turn things around but for that to happen, the Rams boss must splash the cash in January to improve certain areas of his squad.
Derby are currently short options in central defence and Richard Keogh’s sacking in October has left them crying for help in that position. Keogh played in over 300 games for Derby during his seven-year spell at the club, and his leadership qualities have sorely been missed this term.
In fact, Cocu’s team are yet to keep a clean sheet away from home in the league and have lost their last six away matches without scoring a single goal.
The partnership of Curtis Davies and Craig Forsyth at the back is clearly not working, and even though Krystian Bielik can operate in central defence, Derby would do a smart job by signing a centre-half in January. In that regard, the Rams must plot a move for Damian Oko.
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Standing at over 6ft 2in tall, Oko is well-built for a central defender and has the qualities to thrive in English football.
The Pole has often been used on the left side of central defence at Zaglebie Lubin but he is more than capable of filling in at left-back when required, something which could come handy for Cocu.
At the age of 22, Oko has a long way to go in his career, and if he manages to prove himself quickly in England, he could turn out to be a long-term replacement for the ageing Davies.
All in all, Derby must not hesitate to splash the cash to sign him to solve their defensive woes.