Toothless Rams go five games without a win as Millwall prevail
DERBY COUNTY 0-1 MILLWALL
Derby County’s lack of quality in front of goal was evident once again as they were beaten at home by Millwall on Saturday.
The visitors scored with their only notable chance of the game right on half-time, a sloppy goal from a corner as far as the Rams concerned proving the frustrating difference between the sides as Derby made it five games without a win.
Build-up play offered plenty at times but in the penalty area things didn’t click for the hosts, sub Louie Sibley hitting the bar late on but that being as close as the Rams would come.
In an even opening, Craig Forsyth had the first true sight of goal nine minutes in when Nathan Byrne found his fellow full-back at the far post but his header was straight at keeper Bartosz Bialkowski.
The same combination then produced another chance seven minutes later, this time Forsyth heading wide from another deep Byrne cross – a four-and-a-half year goal drought again coming close to ending.
The Rams were enjoying the majority of possession in the opening half, Byrne a useful outlet throughout, while also well-organised at the back with Teden Mengi and Matt Clarke mopping up most of what Millwall could muster going forward.
But clear chances were scarce and it took until the 41st minute for another Rams chance to come, Kamil Jozwiak’s drive from outside the penalty area beaten away by Bialkowski.
Then, out of nowhere, it was Millwall who took the lead right on half-time. A corner from the left-hand side was swung in by Jed Wallace and Shaun Hutchinson was unmarked a few yards out to head down and in to shock the home side.
The second-half saw a similar pattern form, with Derby dominating possession but despite some promising openings, particularly with Byrne frequently getting to the byline, they couldn’t make the most of their opportunities as Millwall looked comfortable with their lead.
The equaliser nearly came on 78, as Byrne’s corner found its way through to Sibley at the back post but his shot could only hit the underside of the bar and the ball was cleared.
But that would be as close as the Rams would get despite huffing and puffing in the final third, their lack of killer instinct in front of goal again proving costly.
Derby: Roos, Forsyth, Shinnie, Edmundson (Watson 60), Jozwiak (Sibley 73), Waghorn, Byrne, Kazim-Richards ©, Mengi, Clarke, Knight (Roberts 60)
Subs not used: Marshall (GK), Wisdom, Bird, Buchanan, Baningime, McDonald
Millwall: Bialkowski, M Wallace (Ferguson 66), Hutchinson, Cooper, J Wallace (Bodvarsson 84), Thompson (Mitchell 77), Romeo, Pearce, Woods, Bennett (Bradshaw 77), Evans (Williams 84)
Subs not used: Fielding (GK), McNamara, Tiensia, Burey