U21s taste their first defeat on the season in heavy loss.

U21s taste their first defeat on the season in heavy loss.

Derby County’s Under 21s saw their unbeaten start to the season in the U21 PDL 2 North season come to an abrupt end with 5-0 defeat at home to Leeds United on Wednesday afternoon.

Leeds’ Ryan Hall helped himself to four goals in the game, in front of the watching eyes of United boss Neil Warnock, while Chris Dawson helped himself to another as the visitors ran riot at Moor Farm.

Derby named a relatively strong side with Kieron Freeman, Saul Deeney, Mark O’Brien, Ben Davies and Michael Jacobs all featuring in the starting XI, less than 24 hours after sitting on the bench for the first-team in their 2-0 win over Barnsley at Pride Park.

Trialist Conor Sellars was handed another chance to impress having featured in the Under 21s’ 4-2 win over Wigan last week, while attacker Kane Richards started after returning from a recent loan spell at non-league Matlock Town – and he was partnered by centre-back Jake Buxton in an unfamiliar striker role.

However, Leeds – who had ex-Ram Paul Green in their starting XI - proved to be too strong for Derby on what was a frustrating afternoon for the Under 21s.

Winger Hall opened the scoring midway through the first half after he latched onto loose clearance by Deeney, and he slotted past the Irishman with ease – while down at the other end the Rams rarely threatened the Leeds goal in the opening 45 minutes, with Ben Davies going closest with a shot over the bar from distance.

Hall added to his tally just before the hour from close range after Deeney failed to deal with a right-wing cross, and the winger went on to complete his hat-trick soon afterwards by weaving his way past three Derby defenders to advance into the box and slot home.

The Southend United loanee then completed his quartet of goals with a stunning free-kick from 20 yards at the midway point of the second half, before Dawson completed the rout with a low drive which was just beyond Deeney’s reach.

Derby huffed and puffed from an attacking point of view and had a handful of half-chances, but they failed to carve out any clear-cut opportunities during the 90 minutes as they tasted defeat for the first time this season.

Derby County U21: Deeney, Freeman, Hoganson (Adams 67), Naylor, Gjokaj, O’Brien, Davies, Richards, Buxton (Thomas 60), Sellars (Wixted 75), Jacobs.

Subs Not Used: Morch.

Leeds United U21: Grimes, Green, Taylor, Turner, Gimpel, Kisnorbo, Leniguan, Hall, Antelmi, Dawson, Turner.

Subs: Atkinson, Walters, Parkin, Payne, Mowatt.

The Under 21s are back in action next Tuesday (13th November), in the re-arranged local derby away to Nottingham Forest – after the game was called off back in September due to a waterlogged pitch.