Sam Baldock was delighted to mark his Derby County debut with the matchwinning strike in Wednesday night's 1-0 victory at Hull City.

The 32-year-old striker, who signed for the club as a free agent on Tuesday, scored the only goal of the game early in the second half at the MKM Stadium.

He reacted quickest to net from close range after Lee Buchanan’s shot rebounded into his path.

Baldock’s strike fired Derby to their first league win of the 2021/22 Sky Bet Championship season, following a draw and a defeat in their previous two outings against Huddersfield Town and Peterborough United.

The frontman felt the Rams deserved all three points for their overall performance against last season’s League One champions.

Talking to RamsTV after the game, Baldock said: “It is good to get goal off my back early doors. It’s been a while since I’ve put the ball in the net, so it meant a lot to me.

“It was a good powerful run from Lee Buchanan for me to follow up on. I think Ravel Morrison tried to take the ball off him, but Lee said ‘no’ and hit it well.

“You just have to follow those in to get one of those cheap ones; fortunately it came my way.”

He added: “I think it was a thoroughly deserved win and we saw the game out well. We played some good stuff in the first half and had some good chances.

“Luckily we didn’t have to dwell on them for too long and we can go home with the three points.”

Baldock spent several weeks training with Derby ahead of the new season after leaving Reading in the summer.

He was finally able to put pen-to-paper on Tuesday and he’s delighted to officially be part of the squad.

The experienced striker’s contract is initially until January and he believes Wayne Rooney’s side have every reason to look forward in a positive frame of mind.

“When I did sign yesterday, I was already integrated into the squad with the three weeks I had in pre-season, so we got some good work in during that time,” he said.

“I know how the boys want to play and they know how I play, so fortunately we could hit the ground running.

“We have to be ambitious. We have a very strong squad and have some experienced players as well as some talented youngsters, so we hope to utilise everyone in a positive way and get some more positive results.”

Derby will return to action at Pride Park Stadium on Saturday in their penultimate league fixture before the September international break, with Middlesbrough the visitors (3pm kick-off).