Rams Punish Leeds
Attendance: 21, 363
Derby County completed a comfortable 2-0 victory to complete the double over Leeds United at Elland Road and move within five points of the play-off places. The Rams dominated the opening stages but it was not until captain Michael Brown saw red for the home side that they broke the deadlock when Craig Bryson curled home from twenty-five yards. Substitute Steve Davies fired home a second having only been on the pitch for four minutes in the second period to tie up the result although Danny Webber missed the target with only Frank Fielding to beat as Leeds` season looks to be petering out. The three points moved Nigel Clough`s side up to eleventh in the table and marked a fourth game without defeat.
Nathan Tyson came in to the starting line-up in place of Jamie Ward and he very nearly made a great start to the match when a Jake Buxton header from a Ben Davies corner forced Andy Lonergan to push the ball away but the former Nottingham Forest striker could only head over from close range. Tyson was involved again moments later when Paul Green released Theo Robinson down the right and he cut the ball back but again he couldn`t find the target with a great chance. As The Rams continued to dominate Green and then Tyson again had headed chances but neither troubled Lonergan in the Leeds goal.
Robinson was involved in the incident that lead to the home side being reduced to ten men on twenty-five minutes, he held of Darren O`Dea as he made progress with the ball but Michael Brown then came in with his studs showing leaving the referee with little option but to send the midfielder off. It took Derby only seven minutes to take advantage of their numerical advantage when Craig Bryson picked the ball up in midfield and curled home a terrific effort from twenty-five yards giving Lonergan no chance. Jake Buxton had a header cleared off the line and Ross McCormack then tested Frank Fielding for the first time in the match with seven minutes to go until the break but the keeper was equal to the headed effort and tipped the ball to safety.
Leeds showed a little more attacking intent at the start of the second period and Robert Snodgrass struck a firm effort from twenty-five yards from a freekick that Fielding reacted well to to beat away and Ramon Nunez also tested him with a curling effort but again the Derby keeper was equal to the effort to keep his side in front. Steve Davies came on in place of Tyson just after the hour mark and he made sure of the points with a second Derby goal only four minutes later, Jeff Hendrick had an effort blocked with the ball falling kindly for Davies and he fired home from just inside the area to double his sides lead.
Leeds substitute Danny Webber had a glorious chance to pull one back when a Snodgrass ball put him clean through on goal but with only Fielding to beat he fired wide of the mark. With their numerical advantage The Rams were enjoying some good spells of possession and they nearly scored a third in the dying stages when Davies escaped down the right and pulled the ball back for Green but Lonergan kept the effort out with his legs but Derby took all three points with a thoroughly deserved victory.
Leeds United: Lonergan; Connolly, O'Dea, Lees, Robinson; Nunez (Rogers 77), Brown, Snodgrass, Pugh; McCormack (Webber 82), Becchio (Paynter 70).
Subs Not Used: Forssell, Bromby.
Derby County: Fielding; Naylor, Buxton, Shackell, Roberts; Green, Bryson (Carroll 87), Hendrick, B. Davies; Tyson (S. Davies 61), Robinson (Ward 82).
Subs Not Used: Severn, Bailey.