Derby have recalled Northern Ireland international Chris Baird from his loan spell at Fulham after youngster Jamie Hanson’s season was cut short by injury.
Baird joined the Cottagers in February on an emergency deal until the end of the campaign but Derby have activated a clause in the agreement to take the utility player back to the iPro Stadium.
Hanson’s shoulder problem has left 34-year-old Baird in contention for the Rams’ final game of the Sky Bet Championship season against Ipswich and the two-legged play-off clash with Hull.
“It looks as if Jamie’s season is over,” Derby head coach Darren Wassall told Rams Player HD.
“He’s going to go and see a surgeon this week in London to have a look at the extent of the damage but it doesn’t look good for him.
“It’s a shame for Jamie because he covers us in three positions. It’s more disappointing, though, for him more than anybody else because he has played a major part in the last three months of the season.
“Chris can play in a number of positions and will give us good cover. We have to protect ourselves and he will be back in training on Wednesday.”