Rams Denied At The Death
Attendance: 25, 874
Two late goals saw Queens Park Rangers come from behind to snatch an unlikely point at Pride Park after entering injury time trailing by two goals. Strikes from Kris Commons and fine curling effort from James Bailey, his first in a Derby shirt, looked to have given The Rams` a deserved victory after an energetic performance. They matched the league leaders all the way denying them time on the ball and stopping them from getting into their stride and even with the fourth official signalling four minutes of injury time the game looked over. Patrick Agyemang pulled one back in the first minute of added time and James Bailey then looked set to finish the game when clean through on goal but he was denied by Paddy Kenny. A long kick downfield seconds later found its way to the feet of Jamie Mackie who held off a challenge before firing low into the far corner to secure a point.
Nigel Clough named an unchanged side with Rob Hulse and Chris Porter still unable to make the side due to injury although Kris Commons this time started up front by himself with Dean Moxey on the left. It was the visitors who started brightly with Adel Taarabt dancing through a couple of challenges before firing in a low shot that Stephen Bywater did well to keep out and Shaun Barker blocked a follow-up effort to deny Neil Warnock`s men. Kris Commons took aim from range but didn`t trouble Paddy Kenny as his effort drifted wide of the mark.
A Conor Doyle corner caused panic in Rangers` defence but as the ball was squared to him Shaun Barker dragged his left footed effort wide of the mark. Neither side looked like threatening the score sheet as halftime approached despite some neat build-up play but The Rams found the breakthrough with five minutes to go. Dean Moxey and Paul Green combined down the left and Moxey`s low cross picked out Kris Commons eight yards from goal and he took a touch before flicking home with his left foot with Kenny grounded. It was almost his last action of the half as he was withdrawn after feeling his hamstring tighten up to be replaced by Tomasz Cywka with Dean Moxey moving up front.
Derby had denied their opponents time on the ball in the first period and came out with the same idea at the start of the second preventing them from getting into their stride. David Martin came off the bench just before the hour mark in place of Conor Doyle who had run himself into the ground. Tomasz Cywka was then involved as The Rams doubled their lead after some neat footwork on the edge of the area gave him time to find James Bailey and the youngster curled home a fine effort from the edge of the area giving Kenny no chance for his first goal in a Derby shirt.
The Rams continued their high tempo approach and Gareth Roberts and Tomas Cywka both tested Kenny from outside the area with firm efforts although they were comfortably dealt with by the visitors` keeper. Patrick Agyemang pulled a late goal back for Rangers when his powerful run through the middle saw him burst past Shaun Barker and bobble an effort to Bywater`s left that nestled in the bottom corner of the net for what looked to be no more than a late consolation. At the other end James Bailey broke clear on goal and looked to have all the time in the world to settle the match but Kenny managed to save the effort along with Callum Ball`s follow-up. The Rams` were made to pay for that miss moments later as Kenny`s long kick found it`s way to Jamie Mackie and he held off the challenge of Bailey before firing low into the far corner to snatch a dramatic equaliser and keep his sides undefeated start to the season.
Derby County: Bywater, Brayford, Barker, Leacock, Roberts, Bailey, Savage, Green, Commons (Cywka 45), Doyle (Martin 57), Moxey (Ball 90)
Subs: Deeney, Pringle, O'Brien, Buxton
QPR: Kenny, Orr, Hill, Derry (Buzsaky 61), Helguson (Agyemang 62), Faurlin, Mackie, Gorkss, Connolly, Ephraim, Taarabt (Clarke 70)
Subs: Ramage, Leigertwood, German, Cerny