McClaren looks to Premier League striker to help Derby hopes

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Derby County could offer an escape route to out-of-favour Norwich City forward Luciano Becchio – provided the player is willing to take a step back down to the Championship.

The Argentine has struggled for game time at the Carrow Road club, with just 11 appearances to his name so far for the Canaries and no goals.

His sense of frustration will have no doubt been amplified by the fact that Norwich have struggled to get on the score sheet regularly this season with a team tally of just 18 in 22 games, the third lowest in the English top flight.

Their situation has hardly been helped by the form of Ricky van Wolfswinkel, signed last summer for £8.5 million, with the Dutch striker managing just a solitary league goal for the East Anglia club.

On-loan forward Johan Elmander has also failed to find the net in 17 appearances for the club while fellow new recruit Gary Hooper’s haul of five goals this term hasn’t been enough to stop Norwich from sinking into the relegation mire, with the Canaries 9/2 to go down.

But while the Yellows may be doomed for the drop, Becchio could be offered a lifeline and a roundabout return to the English top flight with Derby County.

Steve McClaren has worked wonders with the Rams since his mid-season appointment, taking the club to fourth in the Championship, just five points off an automatic promotion place.

With the business end of the season fast approaching though the one-time England boss will be eager to add to his squad and ensure they stay the distance and make a return to the big time.

Becchio would certainly fit the bill in that sense and with 19 goals for Leeds in his final season in the English second-tier, he certainly has the pedigree to give Derby that extra boost for the remainder of the campaign.

While no formal bid has yet been tabled for the star, his lack of playing time under manager Chris Hughton suggests that the former Birmingham manager would be willing to let the striker go.

And should he succeed in firing Derby up this term then a Premier League return could be on the cards sooner than he thinks, with the club 7/4 to go up this season.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.