Prior to taking charge of Derby County for the first-time last Saturday, Gary Rowett had said that he wanted to see signs of his new players adapting to his methods.Looking back on the contest, that certainly appeared to be the case in the second 45 minutes at the City Ground.
A goal down after Zach Clough’s early opener, the Rams returned for the second half rejuvenated and on the front foot. They were far more direct, pressed higher up the pitch and displayed far more intensity in their play.
As a result, Derby created chances aplenty and scored two goals too – through Matej Vydra and David Nugent - whilst they had opportunities to seal the three points, before Forest stole a point with a stoppage time equaliser.
Take away that last factor and we have been given a flavour of just how Rowett wants his side to play moving forward and Vydra, himself, was full of praise for the performance – but was clearly disappointed that it was not rewarded with three points. The 24-year-old, though, like Nugent speaking to the media afterwards, accepts that the Rams need to start taking their chances and not give their opponents any encouragement.
The Czech Republic international told RamsTV: “When we were losing 1-0 at half time, we knew that we could change the game.
“In the first half, we had maybe stepped back, but in the second half, the manager wanted us to step up and do more pressing.
“I moved inside, closer to Nuge and inside 10 minutes we scored two goals. I thought we played very well in the second half. We kept the ball well, created so many chances and we also hit the crossbar through Tom Ince’s chance.
“In the Championship, though, it is always a 94-minute game and we were done right at the end. We lost two points for sure.
“If you don’t score another goal (to make it 3-1) then it always gives them the chance to score. It was the same story against Preston. We were 1-0 up in that game and they scored late on to get a point.”
Derby’s players will now have a two-week period to work with Rowett before they next return to action, with a home game against Queens Park Rangers on Friday 31 March, kick-off: 7:45pm.
After dropping two points against Forest, Vydra has now set his sights on ensuring the new Rams boss claims his first victory at the second attempt against Ian Holloway’s in-form Hoops outfit.
“We wanted to win for him against Forest and now we will be looking to do that against Queens Park Rangers now after dropping these two points,” he said.
“It will be nice to get back to our stadium too. It’s felt like a long time since we were last there.”
REPORT: Nottingham Forest 2-2 Derby County
Rowett Reflects On An ‘Array Of Emotions’ After Forest Draw
Image Gallery: Nottingham Forest 2-2 Derby County
We Needed To Kill Them Off’ Says Nugent
Tweets by @ dcfcofficial