Derby County 2 Rangers 0
Two goals from Chris Martin were enough to give Derby County a 2-0 victory over Glasgow Rangers in The Rams last pre-season friendly. The game was played at a competitive level as Rangers, backed by eight thousand travelling fans, gave Derby a stern test in the opening stages and should have lead when Fraser Aird headed wide from close range. Simon Dawkins was at the heart of The Rams best moments and struck a post after the break before being involved in the move for the opening goal when his run inside the area ended with him squaring the ball to Martin to find the empty net. Will Hughes burst through the Rangers midfield to set up Martin for a clinically taken second and Bilal Mohsni lost his cool and was shown a red card for throwing his head into Martin after a tussle between the two to end the game as a contest.
With Jake Buxton injured Craig Forsyth moved into the centre of defence with Lee Naylor coming in at leftback and Will Hughes playing as the sitting midfielder in the usual 4-3-3 formation. The game was tight in the opening stages but Simon Dawkins had a glorious chance when a back pass found him clear through on goal but Bilel Mohsni got back to put in a goal saving tackle after he had rounded Cammy Bell in the Rangers` goal. Jeff Hedrick and Lee Naylor had efforts from distance before the visitors should have taken the lead when Kenny Miller clipped a ball to the back post where Fraser Aird headed wide from close range with the goal at his mercy. Rangers started to see more of the ball as halftime approached but Dawkins was closest to finding the breakthrough when his effort was blocked before his header from the rebound was cleared off the line by Mohsni with the sides remaining level at the break.
Dawkins was involved again at the start of the second period when a Naylor pass found him just outside the area and his jinking run saw him move into the area before his low effort hit the post and bounced to safety. The Rams eventually took the lead just before the hour mark when Cyrus Christie found Dawkins down the right and he drew Ball from his line before slipping the ball inside to Chris Martin who calmly found the net from ten yards.
Johnny Russell fired a cross through the six-yard box with no Derby player able to get a touch and Martin doubled his tally for the afternoon on seventy-two minutes when Will Hughes drove through the visitors` midfield before finding the striker who took a touch and slotted the ball under Bell for 2-0. The result was put beyond any doubt minutes later when Mohsni was shown a red card for an attempted head-butt on Martin, the Derby striker appeared to step across the Rangers defender path but the reaction to throw himself at his opponent was deserving of the punishment and the ease at which he lost his temper will be a worry for Ally McCoist. The Rams dominated possession in the closing stages and easily saw out the time to end up comfortable winners.
Derby County: Grant, Christie, Forsyth, Bryson, L Naylor, Keogh, Dawkins, Hendrick, Martin (Sam-mon 75), Hughes, Russell (Ward 69).
Substitutes Not Used: Roos, Eustace, Bennett, Hanson, Bunjaku, Freeman, Calero, Santos.
Rangers: Bell; McGregor, McCulloch, Mohsni, Wallace (Templeton 68); Hutton (Boyd 60), Black; Macleod, Law, Aird (Smith 60); Miller (Zaliukas 75).
Substitutes Not Used: Simonsen, Crawford, Shiels, Gallagher.
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