Derby County have not dismissed reports that Jordon Ibe is a target but there might need to be outgoings before the former Liverpool winger can be added to the squad.
That was what Rams boss Phillip Cocu hinted at when he was asked about Ibe after last night’s Carabao Cup tie against Preston North End.
Reports circulating yesterday claimed Derby are close to signing the 24-year-old, who is a free agent after leaving Bournemouth at the end of last season.
“I can’t say yes or no at this time,” Cocu said about Ibe.
“I was clear when I said we are not done yet (with signings).
“Sometimes it depends on situations. We are still working to complete a team.”
“You need competition in each position, for the players. Every player should feel the need to perform well and give absolutely 100%, and sometimes you need alternatives because of the schedule and the way you play.
“At this moment it is very limited, especially in the forward positions. So that is where we focus on.”
Polish winger Kamil Jozwiak is expected to complete his move to Derby from Lech Poznan.
If Jozwiak signs, and Derby are looking for a striker, would they also look for another wide attacker or does that depend on something else happening (player or players moving out)?
“It depends,” said Cocu.
“Also we know the environment we need to work in within the club. So it influences on what is possible and what is not possible, but for sure we are working on a striker.”
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Ibe enjoyed a successful loan spell with the Rams during the 2014/15 season when he scored five times in 20 league appearances, only 13 of which were starts.
He then left parent club Liverpool to join Bournemouth for £15m in July 2016.
Ibe has been linked with Newcastle United and Crystal Palace in the last two weeks.