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Derby County fell to their first defeat in five games as they suffered a 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Blackburn Rovers.


The damage was done in the first half as Ben Brereton Diaz grabbed an early brace which put the Rams on the back foot but they battled back hard in the second half and almost grabbed a point from the encounter.

The Blackburn striker converted from close range at the second attempt, despite the best attempts from goalkeeper Kelle Roos on eight minutes, whilst he doubled his own tally for the afternoon midway through the half.

But, Derby rallied in the second half and caused a nervy ending as Curtis Davies hooked the ball in for his second goal of the campaign to reduce the arrears.


And deep in added on time, they almost snatched a point as substitute Colin Kazim-Richards struck the post from close range as the Rams fell to a narrow defeat.

Manager Wayne Rooney, who returned to the touchline following a recent bout of illness which saw him miss last Saturday’s game against Coventry City, made two changes as Craig Forsyth and Louie Sibley returned to the starting 11.

But the Rams started the game on the back foot as Sam Gallagher twice went close to opening the scoring. The Blackburn Rovers supporters thought he had scored as he guided wide at the back post, whilst a minute later, a shot from the edge of the box went past the post.


However, it wouldn’t be long until the visitors did take the lead as Brereton Diaz got his first of the afternoon. A deflected cross from right-back John Buckley found the striker at the back post. He needed two bites of the cherry as Roos excellently kept out his first effort but on the follow up, the ball sneaked over the line and was awarded with the aid of goal-line technology.

Derby were struggling to hold on to the ball as the visitors looked to punish the Rams. Buckley’s deliveries were causing problems as his corner found the head of central defender Jan Paul van Hecke who could not direct his effort on target.


But, the visitors did double their lead on 20 minutes as Brereton Diaz notched his second of the game. A through ball from Tyrhys Dolan found the onrushing forward who finished confidently past Roos to put Blackburn in control.

And he almost had his hat-trick midway through the half. Gallagher found the forward on the edge of the box but his early effort scuffed into the floor and was comfortable for Roos to save.

On the half hour mark, Graeme Shinnie picked up his fifth booking of the campaign for a late challenge on Gallagher. He will now miss Derby’s next fixture against Barnsley on Wednesday night.


Derby’s first chance of the half came on 33 minutes as Kamil Jozwiak’s cross into the centre was dummied by captain Tom Lawrence but Sibley could not get his effort away from six yards out, whilst five minutes before the break a strong run from Nathan Byrne saw him find Ravel Morrison but his first-time effort went straight into the arms of goalkeeper Thomas Kaminski.

The visitors almost took the game beyond Derby on the stroke of half time as former Rams midfielder Bradley Johnson saw his effort well saved by Roos, whilst on the follow up, Dolan shot narrowly wide from close range.


Manager Rooney made a double switch at half time and brought on strikers Sam Baldock and Colin Kazim-Richards to add a physical presence in attack. They also provided energy, too, as the Rams threatened at the start of the second half.

After skipper Lawrence went into the book, Derby were presented with two set piece opportunities to attempt to get back into the game. Firstly, Shinnie weaved his magic on the edge of the box and was fouled. Morrison took the resulting free kick and forced a smart save from Kaminski who pushed his effort wide.


Moments later, the Rams won a free kick in a similar position as this time Lawrence was fouled but Bird curled over the crossbar.

The noise inside Pride Park was lifted after the hour mark as the Rams felt they should have been awarded a penalty. As Kazim-Richards looked to control a bouncing ball in the Blackburn penalty area, he felt the ball struck the arm of Tayo Edun but the referee and his linesman were unmoved.


Rooney threw caution to the wind and brought on Ebosele for Shinnie, and he provided pace down the wings and caused problems for the Blackburn defence. He won the free kick which forced the Rams’ goal back on 89 minutes.

Max Bird’s free kick into the centre produced problems and Davies managed to hook the ball over his shoulder and into the back of the net to provide a lifeline for the Rams.


And they almost had an equaliser deep into added time as Kazim-Richards scrambled the ball goalwards but his effort struck the post. He had another opportunity a minute later as he met Davies’ flick on from a long ball over the top but fired wide of Kaminski’s goal.

It was a spirited ended from the Rams but they ultimately fell to defeat, ending their five game unbeaten run.

Derby County: Roos, Byrne, Forsyth, Shinnie (Ebosele 76’), Jagielka, Jozwiak (Baldock 46’), Bird, Lawrence (C), Morrison, Sibley (Kazim-Richards 46’), Davies.

Substitutes: Marshall, Stearman, Buchanan, Watson.

Blackburn Rovers: Kaminski, Johnson, Rothwell, Gallagher (Poveda 86’), Dolan (Khadra 75’), Edun, Brereton-Diaz, Travis, Lenihan (C), van Hecke, Buckley.

Substitutes: Pears, Davenport, Rankin-Costello, Clarkson, Carter.

Attendance: 22,098 (1,241 visiting supporters)

Download the official teamsheet here.


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