Derby have been ordered to pay their sacked former captain Richard Keogh around £2million after he won an appeal at a tribunal over his dismissal following a car crash.
Keogh was left with a career-threatening knee injury following the accident and Derby terminated his contract.
But Sportsmail has learned that the former Republic of Ireland centre back has had his appeal upheld by an employment tribunal. So Derby have been ordered to make a financial settlement to Keogh, who had 21 months left on a contract worth £1.3m a year when he was dismissed.
Derby are understood to be preparing their own appeal against the tribunal’s verdict, although it has been claimed the club could be stalling due to financial problems as owner Mel Morris seeks to complete a proposed takeover by Derventio Holdings.
There are fears the takeover could collapse as Sheik Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan is reportedly yet to provide proof of funds.
Keogh had his contract terminated by Derby in October 2019 following the car crash that also involved team-mates Tom Lawrence and Mason Bennett.
The 34-year-old Keogh, who did not play for over a year after the crash in which he was a passenger, had appeals rejected by both Derby and the EFL before his success at an employment tribunal.
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Derby’s decision to sack Keogh contrasted with their treatment of the drivers of the two vehicles involved in the high-speed crash, Lawrence and Bennett, who were fined six weeks wages and ordered to do 80 hours of community service and rehabilitation.
Some club fans then had accused Derby of being heartless abandoning the captain at his time of grief.