Derby 0-2 Barnsley: Conor Chaplin strikes after David Marshall mistake with Victor Adeboyejo also on target as Tykes push under-pressure Phillip Cocu closer to the brink
- Conor Chaplin’s first-half strike handed Barnsley victory at struggling Derby
- The Tykes forward had pounced on an error from David Marshall to fire home
- Victor Adeboyejo struck for the second in the closing stages to seal the win
- Barnsley earned their first away win of the season and piled misery on the hosts
Some Derby fans allowed themselves to get carried away by news that the club’s £60million Abu Dhabi takeover is nearing fruition.
‘Champions League here we come’, ‘announce Mbappe’ and ‘money, money, money, money’ were three of the Twitter responses to the seemingly imminent arrival of Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan and his wealth.
But it could be a while before Derby become the new Manchester City, owned by Sheikh Khaled’s cousin Sheikh Mansour. The new owners’ first priority will be to ensure Derby don’t fall into League One.
Conor Chaplin scored the first goal of the game as Barnsley eased to victory against Derby
David Marshall’s poor pass allowed Chaplin to break into the box and fire through the stopper
Such a possibility is very real after one win from their opening 11 Championship matches; this defeat to Barnsley just the latest in a series of miserable performances this season, leaving the Rams rock bottom.
The manner of Conor Chaplin’s opening goal summed up all that is going wrong at Derby right now. It was an early Christmas present from goalkeeper David Marshall and a blunder under-pressure manager Phillip Cocu could well have done without.
Cocu joined much of the nation by working from home – forced to self-isolate after coming into contact with Derby’s CEO Stephen Pearce, who tested positive for Covid-19 – but there was no effect similar to that of absent West Ham boss David Moyes a few weeks ago.
Derby County (3-4-3): Marshall; Bielik, Davies, Clarke (Jozwiak 46); Byrne, Knight, Shinnie (Sibley 58), Buchanan; Waghorn, Rooney (c), Lawrence (Kazim-Richards 79)
Substitutes not used: Roos (GK); Wisdom, Bird, Holmes
Manager: Phillip Cocu
Booked: Byrne, Jozwiak, Sibley
Barnsley (3-4-2-1): Walton; Sollbauer, Helik, Andersen; Brittain, Mowatt (c), James (Kane 60), Styles; Chaplin, Frieser (Adeboyejo 77); Woodrow (Halme 90)
Substitutes not used: Collins (GK); Thomas, Oduor, Simoes
Manager: Valerien Ismael
Scorers: Chaplin 30; Adeboyejo 83
Booked: Andersen, Sollbauer
Referee: Leigh Doughty (Lancashire)
Chaplin pounced on the error and managed to divert the ball beyond Marshall inside the box
Sheikh Khaled must make a quick call on whether to sack Cocu once the formalities of his takeover are completed. It will take £4m to pay off the Dutch manager but by the final whistle those tweets of optimism had turned to ‘Cocu out’.
But the call needs to be made because Derby are going backwards at alarming speed. Captain Wayne Rooney literally so. He started this game at centre-forward but ended it practically as a centre-half, spraying passes about with slightly more accuracy than his team-mates, but to little avail.
Marshall’s error compounded things and Derby, as often this season, looked a team completely bereft of confidence. Barnsley, who have won three out of four since bringing in Valerien Ismael as manager, sealed it through a stunning second by substitute Victor Adeboyejo.
Cocu had selected the Derby team in advance and watched the action unfold on a feed at home while relaying instructions to first team coach Twan Scheepers, who was wearing an earpiece, and Liam Rosenior, who stood on the touchline.
Victor Adeboyejo scored a second for Barnsley late in the second half to round off the result
Having conceded very late to lose to Queens Park Rangers in midweek, it was imperative Derby responded with a positive opening here. But the game’s first chance fell the way of Barnsley.
Four minutes in, Callum Styles skipped past two defenders and found Cauley Woodrow who slipped a through ball into Dominik Frieser. The Austrian’s low strike forced a good reaction save from Marshall at his near post.
Straight down the other end and Nathan Byrne played Martyn Waghorn into space through the channel. He touched the ball around Barnsley keeper Jack Walton, who’d hared off his line too eagerly, and it required Michal Helik to clear and deny Rooney a tap-in.
As the half wore on, Derby settled into a rhythm and eventually started to convert their dominance of possession into openings.
Twan Scheepers and Derby’s coaching staff filled in at Pride Park for the missing Phillip Cocu
Right-back Byrne was often the driving force and he drew Barnsley’s defence out of position before picking out the unmarked Tom Lawrence on the left. Lawrence cut back inside before hitting a shot that Walton pushed away at full stretch.
Walton was equal to Lawrence again moments later as Derby threatened to break the deadlock.
Which, of course, meant they proceeded to shoot themselves in the foot. On the half-hour, Marshall collected the ball on one side of his box and looked for an outlet pass on the other side under no pressure whatsoever.
Krystian Bielik was the intended recipient – one assumes – but Chaplin saw the pass telegraphed and intercepted before rifling home. Marshall, scrambling back, couldn’t atone for his mishap and was left offering the hand of apology to his team-mates.
Tom Lawrence was unable to convert from a tight angle as the hosts hunted for an equaliser
It drained Derby’s already fragile confidence and Barnsley finished the half in the ascendancy. Alex Mowatt was teed up by Woodrow to drill a shot wide of the far post before Chaplin came within a whisker of doubling his afternoon tally from a 30-yard free-kick.
A free-kick from a slightly closer position in the early stages of the second-half saw Chaplin clear the bar.
Just after the hour and Derby came close with a set-piece of their own. Rooney left it to Waghorn, whose effort was curling and dipping but finally dropped narrowly wide.
It was at least a signal of intent and a swift passing move right to left saw Lee Buchanan teed up to shoot into the side-netting before Lawrence sent a low effort wide.
Wayne Rooney and his team-mates have dropped to the bottom of the Championship table
But you never felt Derby were going to turn it around and Barnsley duly made sure in stunning fashion.
Adeboyejo had been on the field about five minutes when he received Chaplin’s pass, advanced into a shooting position 25 yards out and curled the ball into the bottom corner.
Adeboyejo ran straight to the away technical area to hug Ismael. It’s exactly the kind of love Cocu isn’t feeling right now.
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