Wayne Rooney has revealed Derby County had a decision to make over whether to postpone their game against Blackpool due to a Covid-19 outbreak.
The Rams were without as many as seven players for today’s game at Pride Park as they were forced to self-isolate.
Despite the absences, Rooney decided to go ahead with the game and fielded a number of youngsters on his bench.
The Seasiders turned in their worst performance of the season to lose meekly to crisis club Derby, who prior to today had won just one game in 11.
Despite the odds being stacked against the hosts, who remain in administration and look destined to be relegated this season, Rooney’s side looked far hungrier than Blackpool, who were passive throughout.
The winning goal came via youngster Luke Plange, who tapped home his first professional goal on his first start for the club.
Critchley’s men barely troubled the Derby net, which sees their goal drought extend to six hours of football.
Derby boss Wayne Rooney
As for Derby, it takes their overall points tally to four points having been docked 21 points this season.
“I’m delighted to get the three points,” Rooney told Derby’s official website.
“This week has been extremely difficult and maybe if you look back at my pre-match interview on Thursday you could tell I was a bit down and a bit flat.
“We’ve had a lot to deal with losing so many players and bringing so many young players in.
“We were at the point where we had to make the decision to call the game off, but I wanted to play the game because I felt it would be an opportunity for some of the younger lads who I’ve got confidence in.
“It wasn’t the best performance. We tried to change the shape, we tried to mix it up and played a few more long balls, but it was a well-earned three points.
“The squad was still changing this morning in terms of having to phone people and get them out of bed to be ready to be on the bench.
“It’s challenging, but that’s where we are. It’s an eye-opener for people because this is where we are as a squad.”