Derby Ease Through
Attendance: 11, 740
Derby County eased into the Fourth Round of the FA Cup with an emphatic 5-0 victory against League One Tranmere Rovers at Pride Park. A tight first half ended with Ben Davies forcing the ball home from close range after Owain Fon Williams let a Paul Coutts shot squirm under him to give The Rams and the result was put beyond doubt in an eighteen minute spell after the break. Conor Sammon converted from close range after the ball was not cleared before John Brayford struck from close range when his header from a corner was blocked but came back to him whilst lieing on the floor. Jeff Hendrick fired home from the edge of the area before substitute Mason Bennett scored his first goal for The Rams with three minutes to go to complete a comfortable afternoon for his side.
Tranmere started the game brightly knocking the ball around well but only had an Ash Taylor diving header from an Adam McGurk to show but his header bounced harmlessly wide of the far post. Ben Davies had an effort easily held by Owain Fon Williams and whilst Derby were beginning to enjoy longer spells of possession the visitors were getting plenty of men behind the ball to deny The Rams clear cut chances whilst looking to catch them on the break. John Brayford glanced a header wide from a Davies freekick and Michael Jacobs fired an indirect freekick into the wall after Williams had picked up a back pass. As the half looked to be heading to a goalless conclusion Derby took the lead with two minutes until the break, Paul Coutts effort from the edge of the area squirmed under Williams and Davies slide in to convert from close range to open the scoring.
The Rams doubled their lead nine minutes into the second period when a ball into the area was not cleared and Conor Sammon picked it up before firing a shot at goal from six yards that flicked off a defender before finding the far corner. Jake Cassidy cut in from the left and fired an rising effort over the top in a rare attack from Tranmere but the League One side found themselves three goals behind when a Brayford header from a corner was blocked by a defender and from a position lieing on the floor the defender then fired the ball into the roof of the net from close range.
Jeff Hendrick added a fourth on seventy-two minutes when a neat move ended with Davies picking out the young midfielder on the edge of the box and he sidestepped a defender before firing into the bottom corner. Zoumana Bakayogo volleyed over when a corner picked him out unmarked on the penalty spot and the scoring was completed by substitute Mason Bennett who became Derby`s youngest ever goalscorer when he ran at a defender before firing a low shot from the edge of the area that Williams got a hand to but could not keep out.
Derby County: Legzdins; Brayford, Keogh, O'Brien, Roberts (Freeman 74); Coutts (Doyle 79), Hughes, Hendrick, Davies (Bennett 86); Jacobs, Sammon.
Subs Not Used: Fielding, O'Connor, Robinson, Tyson.
Tranmere Rovers: Fon Williams; Holmes, Taylor, Palmer, Robinson (Black 74), McGurk, Bakayogo, Stockton, Power, O'Halloran, Daniels.
Subs Not Used: Mooney, Kay, Kirby, Harrison, Thompson, Goodison.