Paul Warne provides update on Nathaniel Mendez-Laing’s situation ahead of Derby County clash v Morecambe | OneFootball

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Football League World

·31 October 2022

Paul Warne provides update on Nathaniel Mendez-Laing’s situation ahead of Derby County clash v Morecambe

Article image:Paul Warne provides update on Nathaniel Mendez-Laing’s situation ahead of Derby County clash v Morecambe

Derby County could be without a key player for their game against Morecambe in midweek, with Paul Warne revealing via the club’s official website that Nathaniel Mendez-Laing might not be match fit.

The winger featured for the club at the weekend but because of his efforts against Bristol Rovers, he might not be quite at peak fitness to be able to play in their next fixture.

Against the Gas, he was part of a side that blew Joey Barton’s team away 4-2. He was pivotal to that result too, bagging two assists to help his team to continue their search for a promotion. He also completed more dribbles than anyone else on the field with four and his efforts on a regular basis mean he is one of their go-to names.

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Article image:Paul Warne provides update on Nathaniel Mendez-Laing’s situation ahead of Derby County clash v Morecambe

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He’s played in 14 League One games so far this season with six goal contributions but he might have to sit out the next fixture according to his manager. The 30-year-old gave that much at the weekend that a quick turnaround for the game against Morecambe – they play each other tomorrow night – might mean he has to sit on the bench and perhaps make do with a cameo appearance.

It would be a blow for the Rams but considering their squad options – Warne himself has admitted Tom Barkhuizen could instead get the nod – they should be able to cope without the former Cardiff man.

Speaking ahead of the fixture then over the fitness of the winger, Warne said to the club’s official website: “We might need to check on Nathaniel Mendez-Laing today from the weekend but it’s the way we want to play, you’ve got to gas out and that’s where you need your strength in depth and multiple players in each position. If I could I’d probably swap Nat for Tom [Barkhuizen] tomorrow and not take any unnecessary risks but we’ll see how they all are when they come in.”

The Verdict

Nathaniel Mendez-Laing not featuring for Derby would certainly be a blow when you consider how much he has contributed for the club so far this campaign.

However, with the Rams out of administration over the summer, they were able to sign plenty of players to fill up their squad depth. It means that a player like Tom Barkhuizen could instead come into the fold and considering the amount of Championship experience he has, it is not a bad replacement for the club.

Both players are capable of scoring goals and setting them up, so there shouldn’t be much of a drop off if Paul Warne does decide that he doesn’t want to risk Mendez-Laing. Still, he’ll be happy to give him a rest after his efforts at the weekend, with the winger outstanding against Bristol Rovers.

The Gas were blown away by Derby and they’ll be hoping for another positive result in midweek against Morecambe in their hunt for a promotion from League One.

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