Derby County’s Italian striker Fabrizio Ravanelli has agreed to take a 25% pay-cut to help ease the club’s financial crisis.

Ravanelli, who hasn’t played since early September due to an ankle injury, is believed to be earning £40,000 a week at the 1st Division club.

Derby’s financial problems are a legacy of their relegation from the Premier League last season. Several high earners at the club have been sold while others have beenn encouraged to accept a wage cut.

“I have reached an agreement with the club to have a 25% reduction,’ said Ravenelli, who will now earn the not-inconsiderable figure of £30,000 a week. ‘I have done it in order to help the club.

“Me and the other players are going to try and help the club through this difficult situation.

“It is a personal decision. You have an option to help. I like this club, and I like the fans. I want to stay here.

“There has been a lot of speculation regarding my future and I can say that I will return to play in mid-January and that is 90% certain.

“At the moment I am recovering from the operation in Rome but it is not true that I will be out for the rest of the season.”