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Derby County made it three wins on the bounce thanks to a hard-fought 2-1 victory over 10-man Reading on Tuesday evening in Sky Bet League One.

A third goal in three games from Dwight Gayle and a penalty from Conor Hourihane sealed the win after Sam Smith had equalised for the visitors, with all three goals coming in the second half at Pride Park Stadium.

Key Moments

Gayle was a toe away from giving the Rams the lead within the opening minute when Nathaniel Mendez-Laing fizzed a low cross across the six-yard box but the striker couldn't quite stretch enough to connect with it.

Louie Sibley was next to go close after he latched onto a through ball from Mendez-Laing but the wing-back couldn't keep his effort down and it flew over the bar of Joel Pereira.

The Rams continued to put the pressure on in the early stages and Joe Ward forced Pereira into a fine save direct from a free-kick.

Tom Barkhuizen was next to go close. The winger played a lovely one-two with Gayle before taking aim from the edge of the box and forcing Pereira into a fine save.

Eiran Cashin then hit the woodwork as the Rams continued to knock on the door. Hourihane's free-kick was weighted perfectly onto the head of Cashin who rattled the post from 12-yards out.

It was more of the same after the break as Gayle saw a header deflected narrowly over from a Mendez-Laing cross before the corner that followed resulted in a Reading defending heading into his own side netting.

The pressure finally told and it was that man Gayle with his third in three games. Ward delivered a delicious free-kick that Gayle was able to take down before prodding beyond Pereira.

But within minutes the game was level and it was a goal out of nowhere with the visitors' first shot on target. A cross was stood up from the right and Smith rose above everyone to head beyond Wildsmith.

The Rams were handed a big opportunity on the hour when Royals captain Andy Yiadom was handed his marching orders for a second bookable offence.

And then Derby were given a golden chance to retake the lead when Pereira was adjudged to have brought down Gayle in the area. Captain Hourihane stepped up to take the spot kick and made no mistake, firing low into the net with his effort.

The visitors may have been down to ten men but they weren't giving up and Harvey Knibbs was close to equalising when a loose ball fell kindly to him but he volleyed just over from inside the area.

Substitute Martyn Waghorn should have buried the game after eight minutes of additional time were signalled but he fired straight at Pereira from close-range.

Derby, in the end, saw the game out well to claim another vital three points on home turf.

The Teams

Derby County: Wildsmith (GK), Hourihane (C) (71' Smith), Bradley (71' Wilson), Cashin, Barkhuizen, Mendez-Laing (83' Forsyth), Sibley, Ward (71' Blackett-Taylor), Gayle (71' Waghorn), Adams, Nelson.

Substitutes not used: Loach (GK), Thompson.

Reading: Pereira (GK), Mola (82' Abrefa), Elliott (82' Wareham), Knibbs (89' Mukairu), Savage, Smith (82' Ehibhatiomhan), Azeez (63' Dorsett), Yiadom (C), Bindon, Mbengue, Wing.

Substitutes not used: Boyce-Clarke (GK), Rushesha.


24,821 (814 Reading fans).

What's Next Up?

The Rams return to action on Saturday when they welcome Bolton Wanderers to Pride Park Stadium (3pm kick-off).

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