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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Derby County 3 - Lincoln City 1

Pride Park

12/08/08 7.45pm

Attendance: 10, 091

At last a win!

Paul Jewell finally has a victory as Derby County manager and no matter how scrappy it was at times and how nervous everyone was with ten minutes to go the monkey is finally off his back. Quite how pivotal Nathan Ellingtons 83rd minute strike will prove to be remains to be seen but if he hadn`t managed to poke home a scrappy equaliser and Lincoln Citys` lead had held the pressure would have begun to build on Jewell only two games into the season. As it was their was only going to be one winner from then on in and Ellington went on to complete his hat-trick, the first by a Rams player since Arturo Lupoli, and Derby ran out comfortable winners.

Lincoln started the match quickly and were soon on the attack and forced a corner early on when the ball was headed behind from a whipped free-kick, the corner being cleared from in front of goal by Davis. Wright then had a chance in the box but couldn`t get his effort on target whilst under pressure. Derby then broke with Ellington forcing a save from Burch in the Lincoln goal and Commons whipping over a cross that was just flicked away from Hulse leading to a period of pressure from the Rams and a number of corners although nothing came from them.

Commons, starting on the right, was again looking lively and putting over some dangerous crosses and free-kicks without anyone quite getting on the end. Davies then threatened with Burch pushing away his effort after cutting in from the left. Well timed interceptions from Mears at one end and Beevers at the other prevented chances as the game opened up before Savage was put through on goal by a poor Beevers back pass only for his touch to let him down and he didn`t get an effort in on goal. Oakes then put a free-kick straight into the wall before a long range effort from Commons forced Burch into another save.

Lincoln were out well before the start of the second half for extra fitness work and it certainly seemed to pay off as they started the second half the strongest and took the lead in the 48th minute when Paul Green whipped in a cross for the virtually unmarked Ben Wright to flick home past the helpless Carroll. Derby attempted to step up the pace after falling behind and Mears went down under a Beevers challenge only for the referee to book the Derby man for diving. Ellington was then denied by an excellent challenge by Green and Jewell made the first change of the match bringing on Pereplotkins for Davies.

The crowd began to grow restless as Derby worked hard but failed to produce any clear cut chances and more changes followed with Hulse making way for Villa and a cheer as Kazmierczak replaced the ineffective Savage. It almost got worse for the home side with a sweeping move ending with Gall forcing a fine full length save from Carroll as Lincoln threatened to wrap the game up. With the game entering the last ten minutes and the Rams looking increasingly frustrated they finally struck when Pereplotkins made some room for himself before getting the ball across and Ellington slid in at the back post to level the match amidst protests for offside from the visiting players. With the tension almost visibly lifted Derby took control and Ellington was again denied by the Lincoln keeper when through on goal and a last ditch tackle denying Paul Green when well placed but the break through wouldn`t quite come.

As the game went into extra time Derby again stepped up the pressure with Commons and Ellington looking threatening and Villa being denied again by a Beevers challenge. Kazmierczak hit a shot into the ground only for Burch to save the bouncing effort and Paul Green then struck the post as Derby strived for the breakthrough. Derby finally took the lead as Ellington broke at the Lincoln defence, wrong footing Green, and finishing with a firm drive that stuck the bar on it`s way in. The one way traffic continued as Commons was denied by Burch only for Ellington to put the game out of reach minutes later turning and firing home from a partially cleared cross to complete his hat trick. The second half of extra time continued the Rams domination as Ellington nearly grabbed his fourth from another Commons cross. As the final whistle went Paul Jewell finally had his much awaited first victory as Derby manager, could this be the turning point for the season?

Star Player

Nathan Ellington
The old cliché says goals change games and Elllington certainly changed this one and maybe even the course of the season. It all looked bleak with ten minutes to go but after he poked home the result never seemed in doubt even if it took extra time for Derby to run out winners.

Player Ratings


Roy Carroll 6

Again had little to do but still no clean sheet, kicking really needs working on and giving away possession to cheaply.

Tyrone Mears 7

Linked well with Commons first half and got forward well looking to be Derbys' most effective player. Used his pace when needed to get himself out of trouble and another confident display.

Jay McEveley 6

Untroubled for the majority of the game but not involved as much as Mears on the other flank going forward.

Claude Davis 6

Surprise inclusion and looked rusty at times in his first game in nearly six months, not under major pressure but can only benefit from a few more games in the side.

Martin Albrechtsen 7

Another solid display from the Dane at the back, looked confident on the ball and fairly comfortable against the Lincoln strikeforce.

Paul Green 6

Worked hard again but not back to his pre-season best, slightly hesitant at times to get a shot on goal or the ball in the box.

Robbie Savage 6

Picked up a poor back pass in the first half but got the ball under his feet, generally off the pace of the game and looks as though his days are numbered at this rate.

Kris Commons 8

Again looked to be Derbys` liveliest player with his ability to take players on and whip in a good cross. He`ll need some backup from the rest of the team at some point!

Steve Davies 6

Some neat touches and looked dangerous at times but on the edge of the game, needs to get involved more if he wants to make an impact on the first team.

Rob Hulse 6

Worked hard again but chances didn`t come his way and will want to get off the mark soon, looks like a breakthrough goal could start a decent run and his partnership with Ellington is showing signs of improvement at times.

Nathan Ellington 8

Worked hard but looked to be having a frustrating evening until Pereplotkins cross fell at his feet in the last ten minutes. Managed to make the most of it and poke home, could that be a vital goal in Derby`s season? Looked a different player after scoring and completed hat-trick in extra time.

Andrejs Pereplotkins 7

Looked lively again once he came off the bench and a neat run and cross that led to the equaliser. Could be a real find once he`s fully acclimatised to the English game.

Emmanuel Villa 6

Neat and tidy and came on to a great reception from the Derby fans when replacing Hulse. Another player who looks like he would benefit from a run in the side and a goal or two to boost his confidence.

Przemyslaw Kazmierczak 6

Didn`t have much effect on the game after coming on but an improvement on Savage, still looks as though he`ll need time to settle into the English game.

Manager Rating

Paul Jewell must have been sweating with ten minutes left and will owe Nathan Ellington a drink if this is the result that kick starts the season. Substitutions again seemed to be made more from need than any great tactical change but they certainly freshened things up and Pereplotkins made a telling contribution once brought off the bench.




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The Journalist

Writer: MikeC Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday August 12 2008

Time: 10:50PM

Your Comments

Oh well we came and had a good night, put in a good performace, but fell short. You must be very relieved to have at last got a victory under your belts.
Dean1
to be honest it didn't look like we were gonna get back in it but once the goal went in the tension lifted and we started to play. we'd have taken anything to get off the mark and i'm sure jewell will hope this starts a run. you worked hard and burch and beevers looked good on the night.
diddyram
very releived to say the least! hopefully i'll be proved wrong about a few players and manager this season
goose2301
Well done on the result - had Gall put away his chance for a two-nil lead I think we'd have won. It may have done us good too, though, as we looked like a team last night after a poor start against Rotherham.
NottyImp
Unlucky to the Imps, but of course I'm gald (and releived!) to finally see that win. Another good report MikeC. Hopefully this win can be the first of many.
Rammie
Still gutted we couldnt hang on for that last 7 minutes, how often does that sort of thing happen to us. An enjoyable evening though and a fantastic ground.
Impish
I like to think that it was us (Lincoln) letting you win against us that has sparked your season ;-) If only we could play in the league, like how we played against you.
Markcity
 

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