Phillip Cocu has described Tom Lawrence’s timely return from injury as a ‘boost’ for Derby County.

The Wales international winger came off the bench for the final half an hour of Derby’s 1-0 defeat at home to Watford on Friday night.

Lawrence suffered a shoulder injury back in July, in the Rams’ final home fixture of the 2019/20 campaign against Leeds United, which required surgery soon afterwards.

The 26-year-old has been building up his fitness in recent weeks and quickly made an impact against the Hornets, forcing a save from visiting goalkeeper Ben Foster moments after entering the action.

Cocu is confident that Lawrence’s comeback, as well as the upcoming returns of Martyn Waghorn, Krystian Bielik, Louie Sibley and Jordon Ibe and the addition of new signing Colin Kazim-Richards, will bolster Derby’s squad depth in the weeks ahead.

Cocu told RamsTV: “We are very pleased to have Tom back.

“He was out for a long time after picking up his shoulder injury and the surgery he eventually had. I think 30 minutes was the maximum in the game on Friday coming on.

“It was important for the team, but also for him, to come back and play and he did well when he is on the pitch.

“That is a boost for the team and also Martyn Waghorn is getting closer with his fitness to part of the team.”

He added: “Krystian Bielik is progressing as well, Colin Kazim-Richards needs a little bit more time and Jordon Ibe is moving forward too.

“We will have these joining the team soon and pushing to get in the squad so that is the positive sign.”

Derby return to Sky Bet Championship action on Tuesday evening with a trip to Huddersfield Town (7:45pm kick-off).