It has been a tumultuous year for everyone associated with Derby County as the club have struggled both on and off the pitch.
Despite initially illustrating some encouraging signs following their decision to hand over the reins to Wayne Rooney, the Rams experienced a drop-off in performance levels during the closing stages of the previous campaign.
Although Derby did manage to avoid relegation to the third-tier by the skin of their teeth, they had to wait until earlier this month to discover whether they would be docked points from last season's total.
Whilst Rooney's side did avoid punishment, a transfer embargo imposed on them by the EFL has stopped them from signing any players this summer.
No longer able to call upon the services of a host of individuals, Derby find themselves in a precarious position heading into their opening weekend clash with Huddersfield Town.
However, in a fresh update concerning this particular situation, the Rams have received a much-needed boost.
According to BBC Sport, the EFL have relaxed the restrictions placed on Derby who will now be able to sign out-of-contract players.
However, a salary cap will be imposed on the Rams to ensure that they do not overspend and thus breach the rules of their embargo which is set to stay.
The EFL are reportedly in agreement with Rooney's side over their view that it would be unfair to class youngsters who featured in January's FA Cup defeat to Chorley as being of a professional standing.
The Championship side were unable to call upon their senior squad for this particular fixture due to a coronavirus outbreak and thus were forced to field a side made up of academy players.
Whereas free-agents will be allowed to sign one-year contracts with Derby, the club can only draft in an individual on loan on a six-month deal.
GIVEMESPORT's Joshua Cole says...
Whilst it is important to note that Derby are still in desperate need of some financial investment following the breakdown of two separate takeover deals this year, this particular update is unquestionably encouraging news.
With Rooney currently casting an eye over the likes of Ravel Morrison, Phil Jagielka and Richard Stearman, he will now be handed the chance to sign these players if they continue to impress during pre-season.
Providing that the Rams draft in some classy operators between now and the end of the transfer window, they could go on to achieve a relative amount of success in the Championship later this year.
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