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Derby County remain unbeaten on home turf in the Sky Bet Championship this season but had to settle for a point against Middlesbrough.

The Rams and Boro played out a goalless draw at Pride Park Stadium but both sides had good chances to win the game.

Derby’s best opportunities came either side of the half time interval as Max Bird was denied by Middlesbrough goalkeeper Joe Lumley from close range, whilst after the break, the Boro stopper pulled off a great one-handed save to deny Louie Sibley from inside the box.

The Rams had to weather the storm slightly in the second half as substitute Jonny Howson went closest to scoring for the visitors but it ended in a stalemate, meaning the points were shared for the second successive home league game.

Manager Wayne Rooney made only one change to his Derby side following the 1-0 victory against Hull City in midweek as Craig Forsyth replaced Lee Buchanan on the left, whilst Phil Jagielka and Sam Baldock, scorer of the goal on Wednesday, made their home debuts.

And the Rams went closest to opening the scoring on 12 minutes through midfielder Max Bird. The midfielder received the ball 25 yards out and struck at goal but his deflected effort went wide of the goal.

Soon after, persistent play from Louie Sibley saw him dig out a cross for Craig Forsyth at the back post but his volley was well handled by Middlesbrough goalkeeper Joe Lumley.

It was a battle of physicality at the back for the Rams as Boro striker Uche Ikpeazu made his presence felt in attack. And they had to be wary of his threat at the back post midway through the half as he received the ball and shot but Kelle Roos saved with his feet.

The atmosphere notched up inside Pride Park Stadium due to a series of niggly fouls given by the referee which resulted in the visitors being awarded a free kick 25 yards from goal after Baldock was adjudged to have fouled his man. Boro’s Paddy McNair curled the ball around the wall but wide of Roos’ goal.

Minutes later, Derby were awarded a promising free kick of their own after Graeme Shinnie drew a free kick from Lee Peltier who was booked. Bird took the free kick and got the ball up and over the wall but Lumley made a smart stop down to his left to deny the midfielder his first professional league goal.

And he had another opportunity soon after, too. Shinnie provided the energy in midfield, twice making big tackles in midfield before the ball broke for Ravel Morrison. He drove at the defence before finding Bird on the left but he was again denied by Lumley.

The goalkeeper was proving to be in inspired form as he denied Baldock from close range as it remained goalless at the break.

The noise inside Pride Park was set to rise in the second half as both sides went in search of the opening goal of the game.

And the Rams almost took the lead 10 minutes into the half. After Ikpeazu saw a shot saved by Roos early into the second half, Derby strode forward and almost opened the scoring.

Sibley received the ball inside the box, turned and shot but Lumley made a great stop to deny the forward. From the rebound, the ball innocuously hit Forsyth and had to be tipped over the crossbar by the Boro goalkeeper.

The visitors made a change and brought on Jonny Howson and they started to get the upper hand in the encounter. Roos had to be alert as he raced out to the feet of Marcus Tavernier before he could unleash an effort, whilst soon after, the goalkeeper denied Howson at the back post, making a great save after the Boro man found himself unmarked.

With the temperature rising on the pitch, Jagielka earned a booking much to the frustration of the Derby bench and Rams supporters following a challenge on Howson.

Rooney’s side had to soak up a lot of pressure in the second half with Derby struggling to get a foothold in the game.

McNair almost forced an opening for Middlesbrough on 76 minutes but Roos was out to collect the loose ball in the penalty area, whilst 10 minutes later came Middlesbrough’s best chance of the game.

A cross into the box by Isaiah Jones was flicked on by Matt Crooks, which looped against the crossbar and over the top.

It was a let off for Derby, who finished the game stronger of the two sides. After forcing a number of corners, substitute Jack Stretton had the Rams’ best opportunity in the final minutes, firing wide from 18 yards.

But, neither side could make the breakthrough as both settled for a point on a soggy August afternoon at Pride Park Stadium.

Derby County: Roos, Byrne, Jagielka, Davies ©, Forsyth, Shinnie, Bird, Jozwiak (Buchanan 83’), Morrison, Sibley (Stretton 64’), Baldock (Watson 71’).

Substitutes: Allsop, Williams, Stearman, Hutchinson.

Middlesbrough: Lumley, Dijksteel, Morsy, Fry, Tavernier, Ikpeazu (Coburn 80’), Peltier (Howson 58’), McNair, Crooks, Bola, Jones.

Substitutes: Daniels, Hall, Payero, Olusanya, Spence.

Attendance: 16,123

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