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Paul Simpson glad to have selection headaches at high-flying Derby County

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: February 27, 2014

Birmingham City v Derby County 
St Andrews Stadium
Steve McClaren
Paul Simpson

Birmingham City v Derby County St Andrews Stadium Steve McClaren Paul Simpson

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DERBY County will have some “nice” selection problems for Saturday’s showdown with Burnley, says first-team coach Paul Simpson.

Midfielder Craig Bryson and forward Jamie Ward are expected to be fit for the Championship clash between the second and third place teams at Turf Moor.

Both players missed the victory over Bournemouth – the Rams’ third consecutive win – and Jeff Hendrick and Johnny Russell came in.

Simon Dawkins and Conor Sammon also pressed their claims with key contributions after coming off the bench.

Derby’s bench also included Zak Whitbread, James Bailey and George Thorne, who has yet to make his debut following a loan move from West Bromwich Albion.

“We are in a situation now where the manager has got some real nice selection problems,” said Simpson.

“Hopefully this weekend we will have even more because we are hoping Craig Bryson and Jamie Ward will be involved.

“We have got some really good options.

“Apart from Paul Coutts and Shaun Barker, we are in a decent position injury-wise.

“The strength of the football club is when you look at the substitutes available. Come this weekend we would have one really strong subs’ bench.”

Simpson agrees that having options has worked well for Derby.

“I know from my own experience of being a manager, you pick a side that you think will go and give you a real strong foothold but it doesn’t always work,” he said.

“Saturday against Bournemouth we decided it needed a change, and it was the same when we played away at Sheffield Wednesday.”

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