|Derby County 2 v 0 Ipswich Town|
Tuesday, 21st August 2018 Kick-off 19:45
Derby County 2-0 Ipswich Town - Match Report
Tuesday, 21st Aug 2018 21:51
Second-half goals from sub Joe Ledley and ex-Blues loanee Tom Lawrence saw Derby County to a 2-0 home victory over Town, their first win against the Blues at Pride Park since November 2006. Ledley put the Rams in front on 59 and Lawrence sealed the three points with a freekick in the 68th minute with Town never looking likely to get back into the game.
Grant Ward returned to the Blues starting line-up for the suspended Tayo Edun on the left of midfield in an otherwise unchanged side.
For Derby, Martyn Waghorn dropped to the bench alongside Jack Marriott, while Lawrence started, as did Town nemesis David Nugent, who was looking to add to his 15 goals in 16 games against the Blues.
Craig Bryson hit the game’s first effort over in the second minute after Lawrence had been crowded out on the right of the box with the Rams starting brightly.
Town’s first shot came on eight after a Gwion Edwards cross from the right had reached Trevoh Chalobah on the edge of the box but the on-loan Chelsea man shot weakly wide.
There was a scare for the Blues on 15 when Chalobah’s poor pass allowed Mason Mount to break inside the Town half but Bryson’s cross was too far in front of Nugent at the back post.
Town broke from the subsequent corner and Bryson was shown the game’s first yellow card for a cynical foul on Ward in front of the Blues’ technical area, almost sending Blues boss Hurst crashing as well as the midfielder.
On 17 Nolan shot powerfully but wide following a Town freekick on the left, then with the game continuing to be a stop-start, scruffy affair Derby were forced into a change in the 27th minute when George Evans suffered a knock. Wales international Ledley took over.
Blues nemesis Nugent shot wide from the edge of the box in the 35th minute, then two minutes later Mount crossed from the right, Bartosz Bialkowski punched to the 18-yard line from where Bryson scuffed a shot into a Town player.
The Blues had spent most of the period in their own half albeit without Derby looking overly threatening for the most part but on 40 Ward twisted and turned in the box having seen his first shot blocked and his second effort took a deflection but fortunately flew straight to Scott Carson in the Rams goal.
Two minutes later Ellis Harrison caught one-time Town academy schoolboy and ballboy Richard Keogh in possession on halfway and the Ireland international hauled him down and was deservedly shown the yellow card by referee Scott Duncan.
Just prior to the fourth official holding up his board to indicate three additional minutes, a loose ball fell to Chalobah following a corner but the midfielder screwed his shot high and wide.
The scoreline remained 0-0 at the break which was a fair reflection of a not particularly enthralling first half of few chances at both ends.
Derby had had most of the ball but had been unable to force Bialkowski into a save with their rather ponderous approach.
Carson had also been relatively untroubled, Ward’s late effort aside, although the Rams hadn’t looked entirely comfortable defending Town corners.
Blues boss Paul Hurst is likely to have been the happier of the two managers walking off at the break.
Skuse picked up an early second-half booking for a foul on Ledley, then on 50 Mount shot wide having been found in space on the right of the box by the Welshman.
A minute later, Nolan worked himself some room on the edge of the area at the other end but scuffed wide.
On 55 Skuse was replaced by Flynn Downes, then moments later skipper Luke Chambers headed a Ward freekick from the right over.
A minute before the hour mark the Rams took the lead. A Mount corner from the right was headed out by Toto Nsiala to Ledley who struck a 25-yard effort through a crowd of players which deflected past Bialkowski to his left.
Match Gallery: 4 photos
Town switched Harrison for Kayden Jackson in the 63rd minute as they looked for a way back into the game.
But in the 68th minute the Rams made it 2-0. Lawrence was fouled just outside the area by Nsiala, who was booked, and the one-time Blues loanee deftly struck a freekick which appeared to go through the Blues wall. Despite a deflection, Bialkowski got a strong left hand on it but couldn’t prevent the ball from falling just inside the post.
Derby swapped Mason Bennett for Florian Jozefzoon as Town prepared to restart the game.
On 70, Edwards sent a dangerous low ball across from the right but without a Blues player being able to get a touch. Five minutes later, the Welshman was replaced by Jordan Roberts, who joined Jackson up front.
Derby continued to dominate and on 76 Mount shot wide from 25 yards, then two minutes later ex-Blue Marriott took over from Nugent.
Chalobah blazed over on 79 with the Blues looking unlikely to get back into the match having failed to test Carson at any stage of the second half.
Jackson hit a low shot through to Carson in the penultimate minute of scheduled time but the Rams were comfortably saw the game out to end the Blues’ long unbeaten run at Pride Park.
Town can have few complaints about the result. Although there was little in the game until the first goal, the Blues made little impression in the second half.
During the first, while Derby had the lion’s share of the ball, Town had had spells but after the break they made little headway and Carson was largely a spectator.
The Rams hardly peppered Bialkowski’s goal, but Ledley made the most of a weak clearance and Lawrence reminded Town fans of his threat from freekicks, although the Blues keeper certainly felt his wall ought to have been more effective. Again both the goals came from set pieces either directly or indirectly, as have most of those Town have conceded this season.
The Blues go into Saturday’s away game at Sheffield Wednesday still without a win under new boss Hurst and in 20th position.
Derby: Carson, Forsyth, Bryson, Tomori, Keogh (c), Mount, Lawrence, Evans (Ledley 27), Bennett (Jozefzoon 69), Nugent (Marriott 78), Bogle. Unused: Roos, Wisdom, Waghorn, Lowe.
Town: Bialkowski, Donacien, Nsiala, Chambers (c), Knudsen, Chalobah, Skuse (Downes 55), Ward, Nolan, Edwards (Roberts 75), Harrison (Jackson 63). Unused: Gerken, Spence, Roberts, Sears, Kenlock. Referee: Scott Duncan (Northumberland). Att: 24,362.
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