Football

'He's Extremely Down. He Realises What's Going On For Him Personally'

'He's Extremely Down. He Realises What's Going On For Him Personally'

Derby manager Phillip Cocu has said that Richard Keogh is feeling "extremely down" after he was ruled out until the end of the season with a serious knee injury sustained during a car crash on Tuesday night.

Keogh was a passenger a car driven by teammate Tom Lawrence when it hit a lamp post. Lawrence and another Derby player, Mason Bennett, were both subsequently charged with drink driving.

In a statement released on Thursday afternoon, the club was critical of the players involved, including Keogh, saying:

The players were out as part of a scheduled team-building dinner with staff and while the majority of them acted responsibly and left at around 8pm and were not involved, a small group, including the team captain Richard Keogh, continued drinking into the night. They should have known when to stop and also ignored the opportunity to be driven home using cars laid on by the club, and chose to stay out.

At a press conference, Cocu said that he has spoken to 33-year-old team captain Keogh.

"He was in for a short moment," Cocu told BBC Derby.

"There's a lot going on on.

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"He's extremely down. He realises what's going on for him personally, as a responsible player, as a captain, and that he's not part of the team any more. Of course, that does something with the player.

"I think he feels responsible, yeah. Senior players always have to step up and take responsibility. It's had a huge effect on him personally. It's a lot to deal with for him."

Cocu said that it had initially been planned that the team play a round of football-golf on Tuesday but bad weather meant they instead went to a bowling alley and then dinner.

"Most of the players around 8pm they left and a small group stayed and continued at the bar.

"Some senior players were at the time present, yes they have to take their responsibility, behave in a professional way to know what they can do and what they cannot.

"It was a very bad example and bad choice they made and a big mistake, and there will be consequences, of course.”

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"Due to an incident later, an alcohol-related incident, it cost us to lose our captain for the rest of the season. In the end, it was bad news for the whole team."

Picture credit: Sportsfile

See Also: Derby Condemn Behaviour Of Players Including Richard Keogh

PJ Browne
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