Wayne Rooney was pleased to see Derby County extend their unbeaten run to five matches with a goalless draw against Stoke City on Saturday afternoon - but admitted he was frustrated they could not claim all three points.
Derby enjoyed the better of the chances throughout the Sky Bet Championship encounter at Pride Park Stadium and registered 11 shots over the 90 minutes to Stoke’s four, with five of those being on target.
Striker Colin Kazim-Richards had a shot cleared off the line by Potters skipper James Chester in the first half, while Tom Lawrence and substitute Morgan Whittaker had efforts saved by Stoke goalkeeper Josef Bursik before the break.
Defender Matt Clarke was also denied by Bursik late on as the Rams, who have now kept three clean sheets in a row, pushed for a winner.
Derby are still unbeaten with Rooney leading the side, with the search for a permanent manager ongoing, and the 35-year-old was keen to focus on the positives when offering his assessment of the game.
Speaking to RamsTV, Rooney said: “We are unbeaten in five games and have kept three clean sheets in a row, but we are still left with a bit of frustration that we didn’t take three points today.
“I thought in the first half we were excellent. In the second half we did not start too well but then we grew into it a bit more the longer the game went on.
“I think overall we definitely deserved the three points. I’m pleased with another clean sheet and now we need to demand more from our attacking players to start putting the ball in the back of the net as I feel that was all that was missing today.”
He added: “When you play well, and you get chances, it is frustrating when you don’t win games. I’m pleased with the performance and with the clean sheet, but we need to start scoring.”
Derby had a big shout for a penalty in the second half as Lee Buchanan went to ground in the penalty area under pressure from a Stoke defender.
Referee Andy Woolmer blew his whistle, only to decide to award a drop-ball in the Stoke area. It was a confusing moment and Rooney believed the Rams should have been awarded a spot-kick.
“I think first of all, it’s a penalty,” Rooney said. “It’s a clear penalty, it’s an obvious foul and the referee came over and said there was contact, but he didn’t feel it was a penalty, which I don’t understand.
“I don’t know why he blew his whistle if that’s the case. I saw it on the side of the pitch at the time and I saw it again after the game and Lee Buchanan had their player climbing on his back. It does not come more obvious.
“We understand it’s difficult for the referees, we get that. If the referee does not see it, the assistant referees or the fourth official have communication and can come to the right decision.”
Derby return to action at Pride Park Stadium on Wednesday night against Swansea City (5:30pm kick-off) and Rooney added: “We know it’s going to be a tough game on Wednesday against Swansea, so our rest and preparation for that is vital.”