By Ian Waterhouse
Line Up – Derby County
1 Carson 2 Christie 6 Keogh 16 Pearce 25 Lowe 19 Hughes (Bairdat 84) 15 Johnson 18 Butterfield (Brysonat 75) 10 Ince 23 Vydra 8 Anya (Russell 52).
Line Up – Leeds United
1 Green 2 Ayling 5 Bartley 18 Jansson 21 Taylor 23 Phillips 14 O’Kane 24Sacko (Roofe 59) 19 Hernández 27 Mowatt (Grimes 80) 9 Wood (Antonsson 82)
The fairy tale has begun for former England manager Steve McClaren as he got his second spell in charge of the Rams off to a winning start after a narrow 1-0 win over the whites at the iPro stadium on Saturday afternoon.
On the eve of the match Steve McClaren offered an apology to the Derby fans for a lack of commitment which led to his sacking first time around, but there were no signs of animosity towards McClaren and it reflected well among the squad.
Substitute Johnny Russell struck the only goal of the game in the 56th minute to lift Derby out of the clutches of the bottom three after an indifferent start to the campaign led to former manager Nigel Pearson’s dismissal (and a few choice words to the owner didn’t help).
Leeds were not without their chances, Kyle Bartley headed against the bar just before the break, then Marcus Antonsson’s curling effort struck the woodwork late on as the whites chased an equaliser.
Unfortunately, it did not come and it could have been worse as Matei Vydra had the ball in the back of the net after the break but was ruled offside following former Leeds man Bradley Johnson’s through ball.
What the Managers Said
Steve McClaren – Derby County
“I think you could see the nervousness of the players but amongst that nervousness the players showed fight; the attitude was great and we got some great blocks in at the end.”
“We said we need to put a marker down at five o’clock and we have done. I saw certain aspects I like and potential in the team but there is a lot of work, and a long way to go but if the players have that attitude and fight, I have no complaints.”
Garry Monk – Leeds United
“I said to the players at half-time that we need to put our game on the pitch a little bit better and we came out and we started to do that and then we conceded a poor goal from our point of view which put us on the back foot.”
“We had a go in the last 25 minutes and had a couple of chances, but overall I think we didn’t do enough of the things we have done really well in recent games with the ball to give ourselves the best chance of getting something.”