Match Details: 24/08/2013
Yeovil Town 0-3 Derby County
Football League Championship
Yeovil Line-Up: 2. Luke Ayling, 4. Joe Edwards, 5. Byron Webster, 6. Dan Seaborne, 7. Kevin Dawson, 8. Ed Upson, 11. Michael Ngoo, 18. Alan Tate, 19. Joe Ralls, 21. Liam Davis, 27. Wayne Hennessey,
Subs: 3. Jamie McAllister, 9. James Hayter, 14. Sam Hoskins, 17. Paddy Madden, 23. Joel Grant, 24. Chris Dunn, 28. Andy Williams
Substitutes Used: Andy Williams for Michael Ngoo (46 mins), Paddy Madden for Alan Tate (46 mins), Joel Grant for Joe Ralls (82 mins)
Bookings: Joe Edwards (Foul, 36)
Yeovil Town went down to their third consecutive defeat this afternoon, as they were well beaten by a strong Derby County side. Using an experimental 4-5-1 formation for the first half, the Glovers never coped with the Rams' passing in midfield, and they took the lead through two goals just before the break, with Johnny Russell and Craig Bryson netting for the away side. A switch back to the more usual 4-4-2 saw an improved second half, but Chris Martin's follow-up to a Jamie Ward shot just before the hour mark ensured it was game over, and the Glovers couldn't find the net to turn the game into a serious contest.
With three changes to the line-up that took to the field on the previous weekend's match at Burnley, one was an obvious one, as Sam Johnstone's hand injury meant that his loan spell at Huish Park lasted just one game, with Wayne Hennessey finally coming in on his loan from Wolverhampton Wanderers. In midfield, the extra space went to Cardiff City's Joe Ralls, who got his full debut, whilst up front the established partnership of Paddy Madden and James Hayter was replaced by a lone striker in Michael Ngoo. Sam Foley was left out of the squad entirely due to illness, which allowed Andy Williams a chance to slot in on the bench following his arrival from Swindon Town.
The first half was a sticky one, with the Rams dominating the majority of it, particularly in the centre of the park. Despite having put the extra man in the middle to try to deal with Derby's diamond system, the movement of their players meant that Yeovil were struggling to pick up runners right from the kick-off. Jeff Hendrick got room to put a 25 yard attempt over the bar, whilst Chris Martin was a little wasteful after he received a cutback from Johnny Russell which he put wide.
The Glovers were struggling to carve out anything meaningful at the other end, with striker Michael Ngoo looking increasingly isolated. There had been hopes though that they could last until half time without conceding - those were dashed by two well-taken goals during the five minutes leading up to the break. Richard Keogh's superbly weighted pass picked the gap between Alan Tate and Dan Seaborne, and Johnny Russell took advantage by firing home from around 10 yards out.
Matters got worse barely two or three minutes later, with an outstanding team goal from the Rams. Barely giving any Glovers player a sniff of getting near the ball, as their midfield quartet danced around the Yeovil five, they guided their way through 25 unbroken passes, finalised by Johnny Russell and Chris Martin again exchanging passes, only for Craig Bryson to this time get the final one, as Derby again played it simple but effective - scoring inside the box and in yards of space. Jamie Ward could have even got a third before the break, but thankfully Wayne Hennessey saved his injury time attempt.
No big surprises then that the half time break saw a Yeovil double substitution. Michael Ngoo, who had a poor first half but with desperately little support made way, as did Alan Tate, as Liam Davis - who had struggled in a left-wing role - dropped into the left-back position with Dan Seaborne moving inside. Up front we saw Paddy Madden and Andy Williams come on in a 4-4-2 formation and a desperate attempt to salvage something.
In fairness to the eleven who turned out during the second period, they gave it a pretty good go, and had been building up a head of steam when Derby scored their third of the afternoon. Jamie Ward's wicked swerving shot was beaten away by Wayne Hennessey, but straight into the path of Chris Martin, who gobbled up the rebound into the Copse Road goalnet, and quite simply it was game over.
The Glovers were perhaps unlucky not to get a goal of their own in the second period, as they at least evened out the pattern of the play, if not the scoreline. Breaking after Wayne Hennessey had parried another Jamie Ward shot, Liam Davis tore up the field, with more conviction than he'd shown from his more advanced position, forcing Lee Grant into his best save of the afternoon. Then they really should have been given a penalty, when Jake Buxton took away the legs of Andy Williams in an attempt to stop him from reaching the ball before keeper Grant got to it - referee Keith Hill ignoring the furious appeals from Williams. The substitute who was making his return to the club also headed over the bar during the closing stages - a shame as even a consolation goal could have meant Yeovil ended the game with their tails up. It's proving to be a bit of a tough lesson for both players and management in this division so far.
Link: 2013-14 Latest Championship Table.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 0 Derby County 3.
Scorers: Johnny Russell (42 mins, 0-1), Craig Bryson (45 mins, 0-2), Chris Martin (58 mins, 0-3)
Yeovil Town (4-5-1):
27. Wayne Hennessey
2. Luke Ayling, 5. Byron Webster (Capt), 18. Alan Tate, 6. Danny Seaborne
7. Kevin Dawson, 8. Ed Upson, 4. Joe Edwards, 19. Joe Ralls 21. Liam Davis
11. Michael Ngoo
24. Chris Dunn 3. Jamie McAllister 9. James Hayter, 17. Paddy Madden (46 mins for Alan Tate) 14. Sam Hoskins 23. Joel Grant (82 mins for Joe Ralls) 28. Andy Williams (46 mins for Michael Ngoo)
1. Lee Grant 3. Craig Forsyth 6. Richard Keogh (Capt) 25. Jake Buxton 10. Jamie Ward 9. Chris Martin 8. Jeff Hendrick 17. Keron Freeman 19. Will Hughes 11. Johnny Russell 4. Craig Bryson
14. John Eustance (63 mins for Jeff Hendrick) 26. Adam Legzdins 12. Michael Jacobs 2. Adam Smith 18. Conor Sammon (80 mins for Johnny Russell) 16. Ben Davies 7. Paul Coutts (69 mins for Jamie Ward)
Yeovil Bookings: Joe Edwards (36 mins, foul)
Derby Bookings: Jeff Hendrick (61 mins, foul), John Eustance (90 mins, foul)
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 50%; Shots: 6; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 8; Fouls: 14.
Derby Match Statistics: Possession: 50%; Shots: 11; Shots On Target: 7; Corners: 6; Fouls: 14.
Referee: Keith Hill (Hertfordshire). Assistants: Justin Amey (Dorset) and Kevin Johnson (Somerset). Fourth Official: Andrew Turner (Devon).
Attendance: 7,047 (including 1,753 Derby supporters).