Derby County 2-1 Middlesbrough

Connor Sammon

Conor Sammon scored a last-minute winner as Derby boss Steve McClaren led the Rams to victory against his former club Middlesbrough.

Boro played most of the match with 10 men after Curtis Main received two bookings, and they went behind when Chris Martin prodded home.

Dean Whitehead lashed in an unlikely equaliser with 16 minutes left after fine work from Mustapha Carayol.

But the Rams pinched it when Sammon latched onto a bouncing ball to score.

McClaren, in his first managerial game against his old club, saw his new team emerge somewhat fortunate victors as the Rams extended their winning run to four matches.

After a slow start, the pendulum swung Derby's way in the 33rd minute when Boro striker Main left his foot in on Rams defender Jake Buxton and was shown a second yellow card.

Boro's Albert Adomah then had a shot saved after a fine solo run, before Derby took the lead in first-half stoppage time when Craig Bryson's low cross was converted by the sprawling Martin.

The visitors levelled when Carayol ran the length of Derby's half and cut the ball back to Rhys Williams, whose effort rebounded for Whitehead to drive home his first goal for the club.

Derby struggled to muster a response, but they snatched victory at the death when Sammon beat stranded Boro keeper Shay Given to end a gritty rearguard action.

Derby boss Steve McClaren:

Steve McClaren

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Post-match: Derby boss McClaren

"It's three points. That's it. It was not a good performance by our normal standards.

"The Championship is tough and there are different ways you have to win. We won it despite not playing our usual brand of football and we were disappointing in that.

"I wouldn't say we were lucky as we kept our patience. We waited for the moment and took it. They're the kinds of things teams have if they're going to be successful."

Middlesbrough head coach Aitor Karanka:

Middlesbrough boss Aitor Karanka on the touchline at Elland Road

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Post-match: Boro boss Karanka

"To concede goals at the end of both halves, we felt bad. I saw I have a team that is together, everyone was helping each other and fighting the same battle and I was very happy about that.

"It was very encouraging. When you lose the way we did, you cannot really say anything to the players.

"I would like to know why (Main) was sent off. If he deserved two yellow cards, then you would be ending every game with six or seven players."

As It Stood

TeamPWDLGDPts
1Leicester1812241238
2QPR1811521238
3Burnley1810621636
4Derby189451031
5Reading18873731
6Blackpool18873631
7Leeds18927629
8Nottm Forest18774628
9Ipswich18756526
10Huddersfield18756326
11Brighton18675425
12Watford18666324
13Blackburn18657023
14Wigan17647022
15Doncaster18558-1120
16Middlesbrough18477019
17Birmingham18549-219
18Bolton18477-619
19Bournemouth18549-1319
20Millwall18468-1518
21Charlton18459-717
22Yeovil184311-1015
23Sheff Wed17287-814
24Barnsley183510-1814
View full Championship table

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