Barker To Lead Rams
Shaun Barker has been named as the new captain of Derby County after Robbie Savage`s retirement and he will wear the captain`s armband next season when he has fully recovered from his recent knee operation. Barker was already vice-captain during the recently ended campaign and took over whenever Savage was out of the side or replaced. He played with a long standing knee injury and reportedly did not train for the majority of the season but had enough left to see his side through to Championship survival before being sent for an operation that should mean he is ready for the start of next season.
Nigel Clough brought Barker to Pride Park after an extended chase during the summer of 2009 with The Rams wining the race for his signature in July of that year. His form during his first full season saw him voted Supporters` Player of the Year. Despite a number of niggling injuries he has maintained a near ever present run in the side and he was rewarded with a new contract until 2014 just before Christmas. With Savage no longer at the club Clough acted quickly to name his new captain and told the official website:
"Shaun could be one of the great Derby County captains, in his own way. He leads by example on the pitch and when you see him straining every sinew to win a header, he can be a real inspiration to the team.
The lads need to look up to their captain and respect him, and I think Shaun has that. As a player if you look down the line before kick-off and see someone leading you out who you respect, it can give you a lift."