Riggott Can't Save Rams
The Rams fell to their maiden first-team defeat of pre-season despite an early goal from Chris Riggott, who was in action for Derby for the first time in eight years.
Derby fielded a strong side for the clash at Gresty Road and, encouragingly, Nathan Tyson got over an hour under his belt, the most time the former Forest man has played for in pre-season so far.
Derby started strongly, spraying the ball around confidently, as they did in certain periods last season, and looked for all the world as if they would extend their unbeaten run to four games. Riggott slammed home a volley on 16 minutes, after a Chris Maguire corner caused havoc in the Crewe box, to put his side ahead and his delight was clear to see. In his 45 minute spell, he looked assured and confident, and his hopes of getting a deal will have been done no harm.
An injury to Stephen Pearson disrupted Derby's rhythm and Crewe used is to net the equaliser. Bryon Moore was set clear on goal and slipped the ball past England u21 goalkeeper Frank Fielding after sloppy midfield play put The Rams backline under pressure.
The Rams nearly regained the lead on 25 minutes through Chris Maguire, who could only direct a john Brayford cross onto the post from the edge of the 6-yard box.
Moments into the second half, Crewe netted what turned out to be the contest's deciding goal. Danny Shelly hammered a 30-yard thunderbolt past Fielding when he was given far too much time and space by the Derby defence.
Nathan Tyson, Steven Davies and Ben Davies all had chances to put The Rams on level terms but non could convert, and the score remained 2-1 to the home side.
Pre-season simply isn't about results, and the return of a fit Chris Riggott is excellent news, should his fitness be proven.
Derby County: Fielding, Brayford, Riggott (O'Brien 46), Anderson, Roberts (Cywka 76), Pearson (B Davies 18), Doyle (Croft 73), Maguire, S Davies, Ward (Ball 62), Tyson (Robinson 62)