Derby County 1-1 Birmingham City

Birmingham's Lee Novak (centre) scores an equaliser at Derby

Birmingham denied new Derby boss Steve McClaren a third successive win thanks to Lee Novak's second-half equaliser.

The Rams survived a Nikola Zigic header hitting the crossbar before they took the lead when Jamie Ward slotted in after Chris Martin's effort was parried by goalkeeper Darren Randolph.

Derby appeared in control but Novak volleyed in at the far post to level.

Conor Sammon had two late chances for the home side but he shot wide and headed over as Birmingham held on.

The point restored some pride for the Blues after last weekend's 4-0 thrashing by Leeds.

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Post-match: Derby coach McClaren

Derby started strongly and Ward had a shot saved by Randolph, while Craig Bryson lifted an effort over the Blues keeper only for Dan Burn to clear off the line.

The Rams survived a scare when Zigic's header from a Shane Ferguson corner came back off the woodwork before Ward pounced to put them in front.

Derby appeared to be in control but Paul Caddis found substitute Novak, who provided an emphatic finish to equalise and earn Blues a draw.

Derby manager Steve McClaren:

"We came across a very dogged and resolute Birmingham team who were smarting from last week and we knew it was going to be difficult.

"I knew it was a game that was all about the first goal and once we got it, I thought we would go on and win but they hung on in there, we created and missed chances but that's football, last week we took them, this time we didn't and that's why it's a frustrating result.

"I am pleased with the performance but I think we lost concentration for the goal. I say we should win those games and score more goals after going 1-0 up but it's early days and it's a case of learning about the team."

Birmingham manager Lee Clark:

"If you ask my wife and kids, they hate seeing their husband and dad with a miserable face so turning 41 tomorrow, I will be sitting around the dining table and they will see their dad smiling for the first time in a while so hopefully there will be some photographs taken.

"I was angry last week, we were hurting but we helped pick each other up during a tough week. We didn't take a day off and worked extremely hard and with each day the sombre mood changed to good spirit and by the end of the week we had smiles on our faces again.

"The players have showed a great maturity for their young age so I was delighted that they have got a reward today. It's the first time this season we have gone a goal behind and have come back to get a positive result so that's an important factor."

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Burnley1310212471732
2Leicester139222113829
3QPR12831146827
4Blackpool136611611524
5Reading136522012823
6Nottm Forest136522115623
7Watford1263324141021
8Derby135442521419
9Huddersfield134541714317
10Leeds135261616017
11Bournemouth135262027-717
12Blackburn134451916316
13Ipswich134451917216
14Middlesbrough133642321215
15Wigan104241411314
16Brighton123541112-114
17Millwall133461526-1113
18Doncaster123361120-912
19Birmingham133281420-611
20Charlton11245914-510
21Bolton131751120-910
22Yeovil13238919-109
23Barnsley132381530-159
24Sheff Wed120841218-68
View full Championship table

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