Derby County fell to a 1-0 defeat to Bristol City at Ashton gate on Saturday afternoon in the Sky Bet Championship.
After Derby controlled the game for 75 minutes, Bristol took the lead with just more than ten minutes left through substitute Famara Diedhiou from close-range.
Liam Rosenior, Justin Walker and Shay Given were in control from the dug-out while Wayne Rooney was the eyes on the pitch as the quartet took on managerial duties for the first time following the departure of Phillip Cocu during the international break.
They made three changes to the starting line-up that faced Barnsley as Max Bird, Duane Holmes and Andre Wisdom replaced Graeme Shinnie, Kamil Jozwiak and Curtis Davies.
The Rams were cool and composed in the opening five minutes at Aston Gate and by the sixth minute threatened the Robins’ goal for the first time.
Max Bird floated a lovely ball out to Lee Buchanan out on the left flank who sent a perfectly weighted pass to Martyn Waghorn on the edge of the box. The striker struck the half-volley well, calling for Daniel Bentley to react quickly to tip it over.
The Rams continued on the front foot and looked to open the scoring from a corner after 26 minutes. Rooney’s delivery skipped just passed Tom Lawrence, but fell to Buchanan. It was a touch shot to get off, through traffic in the box, but the defender struck well and just over.
Moments later the young full-back was pivotal again. He crossed to Waghorn on the edge of the box, who held the ball up well to slide the ball over to Lawrence. The Welshman’s initial shot from the edge was well blocked into the feet of Bird who fed back out wide to Buchanan for his shot to curl over.
Straight down the other end, Bristol showed their first positive build-up that pressured the Derby goal. Former Ram Chris Martin laid the ball played the ball across the edge to Jamie Paterson. He laid off to Antoine Semenyo but his shot was well over.
The Robins’ forward was on target just two minutes later, however. He drove forward to just inside the area, switched to his right foot and drilled a low effort towards the bottom left corner, but it was well matched by David Marshall for a comfortable save.
In the final minutes, Derby looked bright again with some lovely team moves. One resulted in Duane Holmes pulling the trigger from 25 yards out but his shot took a strong deflection off Tomas Kalas o veer it off target.
After another bright start to the half by the Rams, it was the Robins who first came closest to opening the scoring in the second 45 minutes. On the hour mark, a crucial sliding challenge by Nathan Byrne denied Bristol a clear-cut goal from close range from Semenyo’s ball across the six-yard box.
Semenyo picked the ball straight back up on the right flank, cut inside to shoot but Marshall was there at the near post.
Straight down the other end, Waghorn took aim after shifting onto his left foot and rifling a shot towards the far top corner, but it glanced just past the wrong side of the post.
With 20 minutes left to play, Holmes had another go from long-range after finding a pocket and taking aim. This time, his effort whistled just over the cross bar.
It was Bristol who took the lead with just over ten minutes to play. Diedhiou received the ball in the box with plenty of space, and a good finish opened the scoring.
There were calls for a Rams penalty in the final minutes when Jahmal Hector-Ingram, who had just come off the bench, got in behind his man and was shoved down, but the referee waved it off.
Derby will be back in action on Wednesday evening when they take on Middlesbrough at Riverside Stadium.
Bristol City: Bentley, Hunt, Dasilva, Nagy, Martin (Diedhiou, 69), Paterson (Rowe, 90+4), O’Dowda (Brunt, 69), Semenyo, Wells (Moore, 83), Kalas (C), Vyner
Unused Substitutes: O’Leary, Mariappa, Edwards, Towler
Derby County: Marshall, Wisdom, Bird (Sibley, 81), Waghorn, Lawrence, Byrne (Hector-Ingram, 88), Clarke, Holmes (Whittaker, 72), Buchanan, Rooney (C), Knight
Unused Substitutes: Forysth, Shinnie, Roos, Evans, Davies, McDonald