Lawrence provides spark as Derby win season opener


Derby County ran out 2-1 winners at Huddersfield thanks to Welsh forward Tom Lawrence’s first half brace.

Huddersfield started the better side, showing more intent on the ball but Derby constantly threatened on the counter. With Martyn Waghorn giving his supporting cast space on the ball with his bullish approach on the Terriers defence.

Lawrence capitalised on some calamatous defending by Huddersfield to give Derby the lead. When Tommy Elphick tried to be too cute with his pass back to Kamil Grabara, selling the Polish shotstopper short, Martyn Waghorn pressured the keeper to clear the ball only as far as Lawrence who deftly lofted the ball over the crowd into the net from just outside the area.

Just three minutes later and Lawrence got his second and gave Derby a commanding lead with a delightful left footed finish into the corner. A patient approach on the edge of the Huddersfield box meant Derby worked some space for the Welsh forward who doubled his and Derby’s tally with aplomb.

Huddersfield continued to threaten with Adama Diakhaby and Alex Pritchard in particular looking lively. It was the former who used a piece of skill in the area to get goalside of Kieran Dowell who hauled down the attacker to give Huddersfield a penalty and a route back into the game. Karlan Grant stepped up and calmly sent Kelle Roos the wrong way on 30 minutes to cut the deficit.

Juninho Bacuna lashed two attempts high over the bar as Huddersfield sought for an equaliser but Derby held firm, ensuring Roos had little to worry about in the net. Derby threatened on the counter as Huddersfield controlled the game in the second half.

Waghorn broke the offside trap and delivered a cross from the left wing which enticed Grabara out only to clash into Terence Kongolo, causing both to need treatment.

Huddersfield continued to put pressure on Derby, but their finishing left much to be desired, eight attempts on goal in the second 45 with only one of those hitting the target.

Derby County ran out winners after the magic from Tom Lawrence in the first half, but both teams will know if they want to match their ambition of a promotion challenge, they will have to improve.

Huddersfield – Grabara; Hadergjonaj, Elphick, Schindler, Kongolo; Bacuna, Hogg, Mooy, Diakhaby, Pritchard; Ahearne-Grant

Derby – Roos; Bogle, Keogh, Clarke, Malone; Dowell, Huddlestone, Evans; Lawrence, Waghorn, Jozefzoon



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