Derby County made it four wins in a row in Sky Bet League One thanks to a 1-0 victory over Port Vale on Tuesday night.
Substitute Tyreece John-Jules scored with his first touch after coming off the bench in the seocond half following return from injury to cement another huge three points for the Rams.
Chances were few and far between in the opening stages but the Rams were the better of the sides and forced the first save of the game through Kane Wilson. Derby broke following a misplaced pass and Tyrese Fornah played in Wilson who struck low and hard but his effort was well pushed away by Conor Ripley.
Joe Wildsmith was forced into his first save of the evening soon afterwards when Alfie Devine let fly from range but it was comfortably held by the Rams' number one.
Ripley made a smart save to deny James Collins from range a few minutes later as chances for both sides started to ramp up towards the back end of the first half.
The Rams had half-hearted appeals for a penalty when Nathaniel Mendez-Laing went down in the box under a challenge from Funso Ojo but the Referee was unmoved and quickly waved away the appeals.
Eiran Cashin made a crucial block to deny Uche Ikpeazu from bagging the opener with one of the final actions of the half as the two teams went into the break level at 0-0.
The second half started slowly, much like the first, but it was close to exploding on the hour mark when Tyrese Fornah took aim from range. The ball fell kindly to the midfielder following a corner and he took a touch before letting fly which Ripley had to make a superb save from, via a deflection, to palm it round for a corner.
Collins fired into the side netting following a lovely ball over the top from Wilson as Derby continued to try and find a breakthrough.
Mendez-Laing forced Ripley into another smart save as Paul Warne's men really began turning the screw in search of the opener.
And Derby got their well deserved breakthrough with less than 15 minutes remaining through substitute John-Jules.
Mendez-Laing pinched the ball down the left, after a good block by substitute Tom Barkhuizen, and laid it on a plate for John-Jules who made no mistake from inside the box, firing home exquisitely with his first touch following return from injury.
The Valiants needed a response and quick and nearly found one through a corner when a scramble resulted in Craig Forsyth having to hook off the ball off the line.
Vale pushed as the contest entered six additional minutes but the Rams stood tall to see the game out for their fourth victory in a row in Sky Bet League One.
Port Vale: Ripley (GK), Sang, Smith (C), Garrity, Devine (78' Chislett), Ikpeazu (70' Loft), Ojo, Lowe, Iacovitti (80' Debrah), Arblaster, Massey(78 Plant).
Substitutes not used: Leutweiler (GK), Conlon, Walters.
Derby County: Wildsmith (GK), Wilson, Forsyth, Hourihane (C) (90' Sibley), Cashin, Bird, Collins (75' John-Jules), Mendez-Laing (85' Bradley), Fornah, Nyambe (75' Barkhuizen), Nelson.
Substitutes not used: Vickers (GK), Waghorn, Ward.
What's Up Next?
The Rams return to action a week today when they take on Fleetwood Town at Pride Park Stadium in the Bristol Street Motors Trophy Round of 32 (7pm kick-off).