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Wayne Rooney Reveals Post-match relegation message he sent to derby county players after swansea loss

 Derby County manager Wayne Rooney has revealed he told his players that it would be a “difficult task” for the Rams to remain afloat in the Championship following their 2-1 defeat against Swansea City yesterday afternoon, speaking to his side’s media team.

The Rams have put up a brave battle so far this season, fighting their way back from a 21-point deduction with a very inexperienced squad and climbing to within nine points of safety with five games to go.

However, they are now in a worse position than they once were with their defeat this weekend and Reading’s victory over Stoke City in midweek increasing the deficit to safety, with the East Midlands club failing to capitalise on the Royals’ defeat against Cardiff City yesterday afternoon.

This will be a real source of disappointment for manager Rooney who even said back in February that his side were in pole position to secure safety over Paul Ince’s men, Barnsley and Peterborough United.

Since that claim, the Rams have only won three of their last ten league matches, not a terrible total by any means but one that hasn’t been able to keep up with the Royals who currently sit 21st.

With this in mind, Rooney has admitted he told his players after yesterday’s defeat to Swansea it would be a difficult task for his side to make up the deficit now.

Speaking to the Rams’ media team, he said: “I’ve said to the lads inside that it’s a difficult task now.

“We will keep pushing, trying but ultimately we will give everything in these final five games.

“What we have to do is keep believing in how we play and what we are trying to do.

“I can start planning and preparing in terms of the squad for next season, but we will give everything in these next five games.”

Very few people are expecting them to escape the drop now and this is when they are at their most dangerous, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if there’s another twist in this relegation battle with the Rams still mathematically in the fight for survival.

However, they now need to rely on others and considering they were seemingly on the verge of forcing their way out of the relegation zone just a couple of months ago, this is a predicament they will be disappointed to be in.

This is why Rooney is right to say it will be a tall order for them to remain afloat now and with experienced heads in Phil Jagielka and Graeme Shinnie leaving in January, they only have a limited number of older players who can get the youngsters in the right mindset for these final games.

Curtis Davies, Richard Stearman and captain Tom Lawrence could be especially important in this aspect – but would have ideally had a decent number of options to choose from and a bench full of senior players.

With the current situation the Rams are in though, that isn’t possible and their off-field situation looks set to relegate them at this stage, a real shame considering how bravely the second-tier side’s squad have fought all season.

They will also be ruing the fact they haven’t been able to pick up more points on the road

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