On-loan midfielder earns praise from First Team Coach Paul Simpson.

First Team Coach Paul Simpson believes on-loan midfielder Omar Mascarell is beginning to show his undoubted ability in a Derby County shirt.

The 21-year-old holding midfield player joined Derby on a season-long loan deal from Spanish giants Real Madrid back in August.

He has started five of the Rams’ last six matches in all competitions and produced a particularly impressive display in the 5-0 home win over Wolverhampton Wanderers last Saturday.

Simpson feels that, having been given time to settle into life in England and the Championship, Mascarell is beginning to show what he is capable of.

He told Rams Player: “I thought Omar was absolutely outstanding against Wolves.

“Not only was his football work very good, but he made a number of challenges when the ball went into Wolves’ attacking players.

“I think he has really improved whilst he has been with us and being settled plays its part as well, as he has come into a new country and is learning a new language.

“I know he is comfortable in the area now, he is speaking a bit more English and has a few people around the Club who talk in Spanish as well.

“We all know he is a good player, from his first training session we knew what he was about.

“He fired three free-kicks into the top corner in a row and we thought ‘we’ve got a player here’.

“We hadn’t seen that come out until recently but we’re seeing more and more from him.

“We’re giving him the opportunity to play football at the minute which is what he came here to do.

“He is only going to get better and we can see he is enjoying himself.”

Mascarell’s free-kick was headed home by Ryan Shotton in the early stages of the win over Wolves.

Simpson believes the Spaniard’s dead-ball delivery can be used to Derby’s advantage.

“His set-piece delivery was very good against Wolves on a number of occasions and it gives us an added threat in the opposition’s penalty area,” he explained.

“We’ve not had that as much as we would have liked this season, so that’s a bonus for us.”

After biding his time waiting in the wings, until mid-October to make his first league start for Derby, Simpson believes Mascarell is now more accustomed to the side’s style of play.

The experienced John Eustace had held down the holding midfield position until recently, with Mascarell grasping the opportunity to shine.

“As we saw with George Thorne last year when he came here on loan from West Bromwich Albion, sometimes players can’t just get straight into the side and they have to be patient and wait for their opportunity,” Simpson said.

“George was able to use that time to learn how we play and become part of that, and in many ways that has been the case for Omar.

“He has been able to watch how we want it done when John Eustace has been in the side.

“Omar has stepped up now, looks to be enjoying himself and is getting better and better.”

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