Rams Cement Fourth Place
Attendance: 28, 118
Goals from Andreas Weimann and Johnny Russell gave Derby County their third win on the bounce as they bear Aston Villa 2-0 at Pride Park. A high energy first half from The Rams saw them press high up the pitch and David Nugent twice went close before a wayward backpass gave Matej Vydra the change to tee-up Weimann to fire into the empty net. Villa pushed forward after the break with Richard Keogh clearing a shot off the line but having a header saved and the result was secured when his through ball found Johnny Russell in added time to double their lead.
Bradley Johnson replaced the injured Tom Lawrence in the side and there was also a return for David Nugent up front as The Rams looked to cement their top six position and they could have been in front inside the first minute when Matej Vydra played Nugent in on goal but Sam Johnstone was out quickly to deny the striker. The same player then fired over with an overhead kick as the home side kept the pressure on in the opening stages.
Johnstone in the Villa goal was out quickly to deny Nugent again but there was nothing he could do as Derby took the lead on twenty-four minutes. A backpass went straight to Vydra and drew the keeper before squaring to Andreas Weimann who fired into an empty net. Villa got back into the game a little following the goal but only had Conor Hourihane`s long range to show for it as they trailed at the break.
Derby were pushed back as the second half go underway and they had Richard Keogh to thank for remaining in front when he cleared a Robert Snodgrass effort off the line and back into the arms of Scott Carson. Joe Ledley`s freekick created a chance for Keogh at the other end but Johnstone gathered his effort and whilst Villa were seeing more of the ball Carson was largely untroubled.
Johnson`s firm header was again kept out by Johnstone when he was first to a deep corner and the game was put to bed in added time as Keogh`s neat pass put Johnny Russell through on goal and he tucked the ball under Johnstone to double the score.
Derby County: Carson; Baird, Keogh, Davies, Forsyth; Huddlestone, Ledley; Weimann (Russell, 57`), Vydra (Thorne, 86`), Johnson; Nugent (Martin, 71`)
Substitutes not used: Mitchell, Pearce, Wisdom, Winnall
Aston Villa: Johnstone; Elmohamady, Chester, Jedinak, Taylor; Snodgrass, Whelan (Hogan, 65`), Hourihane, Adomah; Grealish; Onomah (Agbonlahor, 83`)
Substitutes not used: Steer, De Laet, Hutton, Elphick, Bjarnason