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'Jason Knight will not be leaving this football club' - Rooney says Irish youngster is staying put

The 19-year-old has attracted Premier League interest.

Derby County manager Wayne Rooney and midfielder Jason Knight, who has captained the club recently.
Derby County manager Wayne Rooney and midfielder Jason Knight, who has captained the club recently.

DERBY COUNTY MANAGER Wayne Rooney has dismissed the possibility of Jason Knight leaving the club before the January transfer window closes on Monday.

Rooney’s first act after being appointed Rams boss on a permanent basis earlier this month was to hand the captain’s armband to the 19-year-old midfielder.

Knight has seamlessly adapted to life in the Championship since making his Derby debut just under 18 months ago.

In addition to the 62 first-team appearances he has made at club level, three senior caps for the Republic of Ireland have also been earned.

Amid financial uncertainty as a proposed takeover hangs in the balance, recent reports suggested that Derby could be forced to sell members of their squad.

However, Rooney has insisted ahead of Saturday’s game against Bristol City that none of his key players will be leaving Pride Park. 

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“The players I want to stay at this club will be staying,” the former Manchester United striker said today. “So they [clubs] can circle round as much as they want. The players I want, and who I feel have a future at this club, will not be leaving.”

When addressing the situation surrounding Knight, who has been linked with Premier League club Burnley, Rooney said: “Jason Knight will not be leaving this football club.”

With Knight as captain, Derby have moved out of the Championship’s relegation zone thanks to back-to-back wins against Queens Park Rangers and Bournemouth.

In January of last year, the Dubliner was rewarded with a new contract that commits him to the club until the summer of 2023.

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Paul Dollery

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