Derby County suffered their second straight defeat as they were beaten 2-1 by Barnsley at Oakwell.
The Rams took the lead as Sam Baldock netted his second goal of the campaign, sliding home from close range, but two goals either side of half time saw Derby come away without any points.
Victor Adeboyajo scored five minutes before the break as his shot took a deflection on the way in, whilst soon after the interval, Aaron Leya Iseka fired the Tykes into the lead.
Derby pushed for a leveller but were met by a stubborn Barnsley defence. The closest they came was in the final minute as Lee Buchanan headed against the crossbar, whilst on the follow up, Phil Jagielka was denied on the line as the Rams fell to defeat.
Manager Wayne Rooney made three changes for the trip to Oakwell to face Barnsley as Baldock and Colin Kazim-Richards started in attack, whilst Jason Knight replaced the suspended Graeme Shinnie.
And it was Knight who created Derby’s first chance of the game as he broke from midfield and fed Tom Lawrence on the left-hand side. The skipper cut inside and shot but his effort was saved by Barnsley goalkeeper Brad Collins.
However, the Rams had to weather a mini-storm soon after and had goalkeeper Kelle Roos to thank for keeping the scores level.
Firstly, the Rams’ shot stopper denied a certain goal from a corner with his feet, whilst the follow up from Barnsley striker Cauley Woodrow was blocked by Curtis Davies, and he was called on again straight after.
A deep cross into the box from Callum Brittain picked out Leya Iseka at the back post but the goalkeeper made himself big and tall and saved his near-post header well.
Rams’ midfielder Ravel Morrison was booked on 15 minutes, meaning he misses Saturday’s trip to Millwall, but he had Derby’s next chance of the evening as he forced a strong save from Collins who palmed over his 25-yard effort.
But, Derby did find the opening goal of the evening midway through the half as Baldock notched his second goal of the campaign.
Morrison played the ball into Lawrence inside the penalty area, the captain poked the ball into the path of Baldock whose first time finish put the Rams ahead at Oakwell.
And they looked comfortable and in control as they kept the ball nicely and looked to create further openings.
However, the Rams were dealt a blow just before half time as out of nowhere, Barnsley grabbed an equaliser. Adeboyejo raced on to a long ball over the top, cut inside and shot from inside the box, the ball deflected off Davies and into the back of the net as the Tykes levelled going into the half time interval.
Rooney made a change at the break as he introduced Buchanan in place of Craig Forsyth and three minutes into the half, he earned a booking.
From the resulting free kick, Barnsley took the lead as Brittain’s long free kick found Leya Iseka who had drifted beyond the defence and he finished well beyond Roos to turn the game on its head.
Derby needed a lift but were finding opportunities hard to come by as Barnsley stood tall and remained resolute.
Rooney turned to his bench and brough on Festy Ebosele in place of Kazim-Richards for the final 20 minutes of the game.
His pace almost forced the equaliser with 15 minutes remaining. He sprinted beyond the full back as he received a pass from Morrison. The Irishman picked his head up and found Lawrence in the penalty area but he miskicked in front of goal.
Rooney made his last roll of the dice and brought Louie Sibley into the action in place of goalscorer Baldock.
He had a chance straight away as he turned on the edge of the box and shot which forced Collins to tip over the crossbar. From the resulting corner, Knight headed wide.
It was proving to be a difficult night for the Rams who continued to push for an equaliser as Morrison saw a volley blocked, whilst in additional time, the Rams thought they had equalised.
It was the Jamaican international that stood a cross up to the back post for Buchanan who headed against the crossbar and on the follow up, Jagielka saw his effort cleared off the line as it ended in defeat for the Rams.
Barnsley: Collins, Styles (Williams 63’), Anderson, Brittain, Woodrow (C), Benson, Iseka, Moon, Gomes (Palmer 78’), Adeboyejo (Cole 69’), Helik.
Substitutes: Walton, Kitching, Oduor, Oulare
Derby County: Roos, Byrne, Forsyth (Buchanan 46’), Jagielka, Bird, Baldock (Sibley 78’), Lawrence (C), Morrison, Kazim-Richards (Ebosele 68’), Davies, Knight.
Substitutes: Allsop, Jozwiak, Stearman, Aghatise.