Phillip Cocu felt Derby County did enough to claim all three points from their Friday night clash with Cardiff City at Pride Park Stadium.
The Rams, however, were forced to settle for a point in the 1-1 draw despite creating a number of good goalscoring opportunities.
Derby got off to a dream start against the Bluebirds as Scott Malone scored from close range after just six minutes against his former club.
Robert Glatzel levelled from the penalty spot soon afterwards after Derby skipper Richard Keogh was adjudged to have brought him down in the box.
Martyn Waghorn and Jack Marriott both went close in the first half for the Rams, while Marriott thundered a shot against the crossbar just after half-time.
Waghorn was denied by visiting goalkeeper Alex Smithies before the hour mark and Tom Lawrence drifted an effort over the bar late on.
Cocu, who was critical of his side following the 3-0 defeat at Brentford two weeks ago prior to the international break, but could not fault his players’ display against Neil Warnock’s side.
He told RamsTV: “I am proud of the reaction from the Brentford game. We needed a performance and I think we deserved to win.
“Cardiff play a direct game so we had to deal with that and it was a physical encounter. I think we did very well in that aspect and I told the players that afterwards; we fought well.
“We tried to play as much as possible and I think we played well. We had chances to score more, we hit the crossbar and forced saves from their goalkeeper, but we couldn’t get that goal.”
He added: “I want to thank the fans for their support. They kept supporting the team and it gives them a really good boost to keep on going when they are tired.
“We will do our best to give our fans three points in our next home game, as well as against Leeds next weekend.”
Cocu was aggrieved that Derby weren’t awarded a penalty moments before Cardiff were given a spot-kick of their own.
Waghorn appeared to be fouled in the area by Joe Bennett but Referee Darren England waved away the appeals.
Then, in the lead-up to Cardiff’s winning their penalty, Cocu felt there was a handball by a Bluebirds player.
He said: “I think the decisions, major decisions, decided the course of the game.
“It’s hard to take at the moment because we started the match really well and scores early.
“We had good energy in the team and I think the penalty decision on Martyn Waghorn was clear.
“It should have been a penalty, which would have given us the chance to go 2-0 up.
“Instead, we had a penalty against us a few minutes later. I felt there was a handball in the build-up so it’s hard to take at the moment and especially for the players and fans.”
Cocu believes Derby need to show a more clinical edge in the final third.
He feels his side are creating enough opportunities to score goals but has stressed they need to be more ruthless at key moments.
The Dutchman is convinced that the Rams have the quality to put teams to the sword with the options he has to choose from in attack.
“We need to get a higher percentage of goals from our chances and it is something that we have spoken about with the group,” he explained.
“You don’t always get a lot of chances so when one or two in a game come your way, you have to be prepared to take them.
“At this moment we are creating a lot of chances to score a goal. I know during the season it will be completely different and at some stage, for example, we’ll have three shots in a game and two will go in.
“We have to keep working hard to make sure it goes our way.”