Derby County vs Blackburn Rovers. Sky Bet Championship.
Pride Park StadiumAttendance22,098.
Report and highlights from the Sky Bet Championship clash between Derby County and Blackburn Rovers at Pride Park as Ben Brereton Diaz scored twice in the first half to seal victory for Tony Mowbray's side.
Saturday 30 October 2021 19:08, UK
Ben Brereton Diaz's first-half double gave Blackburn a 2-1 win that ended Derby's five-game unbeaten run in the Championship.
The Chile international deservedly put Blackburn in command during an opening 45 minutes in which Derby were pulled apart, taking his tally to 12 goals for the campaign.
It was more even in the second half and Curtis Davies gave Derby, bottom of the table, hope with a late volley before Colin Kazim-Richards rattled a post in added time.
American businessman Chris Kircher, who has confirmed his interest in buying Derby, was at the game and saw Blackburn waste a good chance in the second minute.
Sam Gallagher met a cross from the left but headed wide from inside the six-yard box when he should have hit the target.
But Blackburn went ahead in the eighth minute when John Buckley whipped in a cross from the right and Brereton Diaz bundled the ball over the line at the back post after Kelle Roos saved his first effort.
Blackburn went close to a second in the 14th minute as Jan Paul Van Hecke's header from a corner struck the outside of a post but they scored again six minutes later.
Tyrhys Dolan and Gallagher combined to play in Brereton Diaz who slipped the ball under Roos from 10 yards.
Derby were struggling to cope with Blackburn's movement and Brereton Diaz had another chance but this time his shot lacked the power to trouble Roos.
Brereton Diaz opened Derby up again in the 38th minute with a fizzing cross from the left but Gallagher fired over as he arrived at the back post.
Derby responded two minutes later when Nathan Byrne surged forward and set up Ravel Morrison, who forced Thomas Kaminski into a sprawling save.
But the half ended with another great chance for Blackburn with Roos saving from Bradley Johnson before Dolan sent the rebound inches wide.
Derby made a double change, bringing on strikers Kazim-Richards and Sam Baldock, and they almost pulled a goal back in the 56th minute.
Graeme Shinnie was tripped just outside the area and Morrison's free-kick was turned behind by Kaminski.
Derby were asking more questions of Blackburn and Tom Lawrence was only just off target with a 20-yard drive in the 74th minute.
Blackburn had given away several free-kicks around their box and they were punished in the 89th minute when Davies hooked the ball in from the edge of the six-yard area.
It set up a frantic finale and Kazim-Richards almost snatched a point when he hit the post in stoppage time before firing wide as Blackburn ended up hanging on.
Derby's Wayne Rooney: "First half we were not good enough. We were not aggressive, didn't play with energy, no composure on the ball, the back four was too deep and we made it quite comfortable for Blackburn. We conceded two sloppy goals and that's not good enough, I can't accept that performance first half.
"I asked for a reaction at half-time and I felt I got a positive reaction. Everything I have just spoken about was better in the second half, we played with more energy, we were more aggressive. I was pleased with the reaction second half but we cannot afford to go missing for 45 minutes in games or we will get punished. It's a good lesson for us."
Blackburn's Tony Mowbray: "We should have scored two or three more goals but we didn't and ended up hanging on at the death. We've dropped two two-goal leads so far this season, Luton and Coventry where we've been 2-0 up and only taken a point and it could have happened today. We were a bit frustrated in the dressing room at the end, it wasn't a big celebration really, it was more of a 'come on, we have to get better, we have to pick a pass when teams are gambling and throwing bodies forward and run away and score again to finish the game.'
"So we'll keep working on that but I think we deserved the points on the balance of 90 minutes. I think the front three deserve huge credit today, their work ethic and desire to help the team get the ball back and put them under pressure was immense. It was our best out of possession game which translated into probably our best 45 minutes of in possession game."