Section: Derby

FA Cup: Derby 1-2 Reading

Yakubu guides Reading into FA Cup quarterfinals

Former Everton and Middlesbrough striker Ayegbeni Yakubu showed his class in front of goal as Reading swept into the last eight of the FA Cup at the expense of a Derby side reduced to 10 men for 50 minutes.

Derby looked the better side until full-back Stephen Warnock was sent off for a second yellow card in the 39th minute but Reading made the advantage count.

Hal Robson-Kanu’s goal was cancelled out by Darren Bent but Yakubu, who was signed as a free agent during the January transfer window but has cost English clubs a total of more than 25 million pounds in transfer fees, netted the winner.

Derby’s promotion ambitions dictated seven changes but there was no lack of cohesion from them and it took a good save from Adam Federici to keep out winger Simon Dawkins snap-shot within 90 seconds of the kick-off.

Next, Rams defender Richard Keogh was inches short of stabbing home a free-kick from Omar Mascarell but after a quarter of an hour Reading hit back to win a free-kick that let in Simon Cox for an angled shot that rattled the near post.

Derby swept back upfield for Dawkins to lay on a shooting chance that Jeff Hendrick fired over the bar and then Federici turned away a blistering low shot from Jesse Lingard, making his debut on loan from Manchester United.

The keeper then produced an even better reflex stop to beat away a powerful point-blank effort from Bent as Derby continued to press.

A long-range shot from Mascarell was drilled straight into the goalkeeper’s hands but a rapid break caught Derby undermanned at the back and Cox latched on to a header from Pavel Pogrebnyak to fire a thunderous shot just too high from the right of goal.

After so much Derby pressure, the odds turned in Reading’s favour when Warnock was sent off in the 39th minute for a lunge that left Jamie Mackie rolling in pain and produced a second yellow card from referee Craig Pawson.

It could have got worse for Derby when a shot from Danny Williams bounced up against Keogh’s raised hand off his thigh to prompt penalty claims but the referee waved play on.

Cox had a powerful shot blocked as Reading tried to make their advantage count and their extra man paid off in the 53rd minute when a rapid counter-attack ended with the same player escaping on the right to deliver a clever pass for Robson-Kanu to curl left-footed inside the far post.

Reading, who had previously lost to Derby in the Championship and the Capital One Cup this season, stayed in front for only seven minutes and it was the in-form Bent who scored.

A right-wing cross was just too strong for Bent to meet but the ball was crossed again from the left by Craig Forsyth and this time the England striker made no mistake from close range – his fifth goal in as many games since joining the Rams on loan from Aston Villa and his ninth in his last 10 FA Cup appearances.

Mackie fired wide from 12 yards after in what was becoming a rip-roaring cup tie and nine minutes from time Reading got back in front when a Derby attack fizzled out and left them short-handed at the back.

Cox swept the ball straight through Derby’s floundering back line and there was substitute Yakubu to underline his quality by powering forward and firing home a clinical left-footed shot from the edge of the box.

 

Championship: Bournemouth 2-2 Derby

Darren Bent’s fourth goal in five games earned a point for Derby and knocked promotion rivals Bournemouth off the top of the Championship.

Matt Ritchie swept in a stylish opener for Bournemouth after Yann Kermorgant played the ball into his path.

But Bent set up forward Tom Ince to equalise on the half-hour mark.

Callum Wilson fired in to give Bournemouth a half-time lead, before Bent – on loan from Aston Villa – scored from a Simon Dawkins cut-back.

Bournemouth showed why they are the country’s top scorers by taking the lead with their first meaningful chance.

Wilson went bursting down the right and his cross was chested down by Kermorgant for Ritchie to send a cushioned volley beyond Lee Grant and into the bottom right corner.

It was a blow for Derby, who then lost top scorer Chris Martin to an injury, and could have gone further behind as Wilson seized on a poor header from Richard Keogh and steered his shot wide from the edge of the penalty area.

Home goalkeeper Artur Boruc made a terrific save to stop a near-post volley from Bent – on for the injured Martin.

But Derby hit back as Ince finished emphatically from 12 yards after the busy Bent had robbed Bournemouth defender Steve Cook by the corner flag and pulled back a cross.

Wilson restored Bournemouth’s advantage in the final minute of the half, ripping a right-foot shot across Grant into the top corner after Kermorgant had worked tirelessly to chase a long punt up field and keep the ball in play.

The second half was not as frenetic as the first but it required an excellent block by Bournemouth captain Tommy Elphick to deny Ince a second after the winger wriggled past two defenders.

Bent silenced the home fans in the 67th minute to earn a point – again showing Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert what he is missing by sending him on loan.

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Championship: Middlesbrough 2-0 Derby

Rampant Middlesbrough go top of the Championship at the expense of 10-man Derby County.

Ex-Derby loanee Bamford sidefooted in Adam Reach’s cross after six minutes and was brought down by Ryan Shotton for a second-half penalty.

Shotton was dismissed before Leadbitter converted from the spot.

Banned Boro boss Aitor Karanka watched from the stands but it made little difference to the impressive victors.

Derby, leaders at kick-off, were looking for only their second win at the Riverside this century.

But it was the hosts who made the perfect start when Chelsea starlet Bamford tucked away Reach’s pass from seven yards.

It was the promising 21-year-old’s sixth goal in seven games for Middlesbrough, with whom he wants to remain beyond the expiry of his loan deal in January.

Bamford, who would later depart to a standing ovation, came close to doubling the lead after collecting a Leadbitter through ball but was denied by Derby keeper Lee Grant, who completed a superb double save by palming away Jelle Vossen’s rebound effort.

Jeff Hendrick wasted a rare first-half Derby chance, curling tamely at Dimitrios Konstantopoulos after a poor clearance by the Boro keeper.

McClaren made two changes at the break, with Omar Mascarell and Simon Dawkins replaced by Jordan Ibe and Leon Best.

But it failed to stifle the home side’s dominance and the former Middlesbrough boss made his final change on the hour, replacing Hendrick with Will Hughes.

However, moments later things went from bad to worse for Derby when Shotton tripped Bamford in the area and saw red.

The lively Leadbitter thrashed the spot-kick low into Grant’s net to ensure Boro, albeit temporarily, lead the Championship for the first time in two years.

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League Cup: Carlisle 0-2 Derby

Jeff Hendrick and Chris Martin both scored as Derby County beat League Two Carlisle United in the Capital One Cup first round at Brunton Park.

Hendrick headed the opener from close-range, just moments after Rams keeper Lee Grant tipped a free kick from David Symington on to the crossbar.

Martin volleyed in Johnny Russell’s cross for the second in injury time.

Steve McClaren’s Championship side have won two out of two so far this season after beating Rotherham on Saturday.

Graham Kavanagh’s team though have lost both of their games so far and are still to score, after starting their league campaign with defeat at home to newly promoted Luton Town.

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Championship: Derby 1-0 Rotherham

Jeff Hendrick scored the only goal with nine minutes remaining to give Derby victory over Rotherham.

Steve Evans’ newly-promoted Millers gave an excellent account of themselves.

And they almost snatched a point in the last minute when Craig Forsyth cleared a Kieran Agard shot off the line.

But Hendrick’s effort proved to be enough as he turned home Cyrus Christie’s cross.

Derby boss Steve McClaren kept faith with eight of the players who started last season’s Championship play-off final.

His team made a bright start, too, forcing a Rotherham side containing three new boys of their own – Paul Green, Matt Derbyshire and Kirk Broadfoot – on to the back foot.

The visitors did have chances but they needed excellent saves from Adam Collin to deny Simon Dawkins and Johnny Russell and keep them on level terms.

Rotherham continued to battle hard after the break, only for all their good work to be undone by Hendrick.

The 22-year-old scored five goals towards the end of last season as Derby’s promotion push intensified.

And he was in the right place to open his account for the new campaign, firing Christie’s cross high into the net.

Rotherham fought back, though. Green thought he had equalised against his former club with a firm header, only for Lee Grant to make a tremendous save.

Then, in the last seconds, Forsyth came to Derby’s rescue when he turned away Agard’s goal-bound effort.

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