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With Cardiff closing in, Derby hijacking the deal for £2m attacking star would offer a key dimension

Kieffer Moore has been linked with a move to Derby County
CARDIFF, WALES - NOVEMBER 19: Kieffer Moore of Wales during the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifier between Wales and Hungary so at Cardiff City Stadium on November 19, 2019 in Cardiff, Wales. (Photo by Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images)

Why Derby County should beat off competition for Kieffer Moore

According to The Northern Echo (h/t Wales Online), Derby County are among a host of Championship clubs to have held talks with Wigan Athletic striker Kieffer Moore and his representatives. However, BBC have reported that Cardiff City are closing in on the attacker, with a medical imminent.

As per the source, the Welsh international, who scored 10 goals in the Championship last season, is expected to depart the Latics following the club’s relegation to League One. Moore is rated at £2m by Wigan and has a couple of years remaining on his contract. 

Derby’s current attacking scenario

Derby County finished 10th in the Championship standings last season, six points adrift of the playoff spots. The Rams scored 62 goals in 46 games, returns which look pretty decent on paper. But Cocu will need to improve on that record if Derby are to mount a serious challenge for promotion next term.

Former lifeguard Kieffer Moore says he is a 'very unusual ...
Kieffer Moore bagged 10 goals for relegated Wigan in the Championship last season (Getty Images)

With that in mind, the Dutch gaffer will need to find a replacement for Chris Martin, who was the club’s most influential attacker last season with an impressive tally of 11 goals and 6 assists in the Championship. 

The 31-year-old is currently a free agent following the expiry of his contract with the Rams and coping with his departure will surely be a massive challenge for Cocu. 

Martyn Waghorn is once again expected to be a key figure up top after scoring 12 goals last term while Jack Marriott will be expected to show significant improvement after finding the net just twice in the league over the course of the 2019/20 campaign.

Wayne Rooney established himself as a key figure for the Rams during the second half of the 2019/20 campaign, with Cocu using the former England captain in a playmaking role in the middle of the park rather than as a striker up top. 

Middlesbrough hijack Kieffer Moore switch, Blackburn deal ...
Moore has been linked with a host of Championship clubs including Derby County (Getty Images)

Why Kieffer Moore could be a good signing

Kieffer Moore was one of the rare positives from an otherwise dismal 2019/20 campaign that eventually ended in relegation for Wigan Athletic. The Welsh international impressed with 10 goals and 4 assists in 36 league appearances last term, averaging an astonishing 8.3 aerial duels per game. 

An overall tally of 18 goals and 9 assists in 87 career appearances in England’s second-tier suggests that Moore might not be the most prolific striker on the planet, but he certainly offers a lot with his supreme aerial ability that perfectly complements his 6ft 5in imposing physical presence inside the box. 

Derby currently lack a target man in their ranks who can bring others into play with his physicality and aerial ability up top. Moore could well offer Cocu with a genuine focal point in his attack. 

Derby County fans told to be patient under new manager Phillip ...
Derby boss Phillip Cocu (Getty Images)

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Derby County need to make full use of the transfer window this summer by plugging some of the gaping holes in their squad. Kieffer Moore still has several years left in his prime at 28 and he could well be a massive bargain for the Rams if he is indeed available at something around £2m.

But with Cardiff heavily linked with the player, Derby have to hijack the deal if they really are to get Moore.

James Rodriguez (Getty Images)

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