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iPro Stadium (ATT 25,809) 12th April 2014 - Kick off 15:07

Derby Derby County vs Huddersfield Town Huddsf'ld

Derby 3

J Russell (28)
A Smithies (og 50)
C Martin (pen 57)

ft

Huddsf'ld 1

N Wells (14)
J Lynch (S/O 43)
P Clarke (S/O 56)

Sky Bet Championship: Derby recover to see off nine-man Huddersfield 3-1

Last Updated: 12/04/14 5:45pm

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Johnny Russell: Started Derby's recovery with an equaliser

Johnny Russell: Started Derby's recovery with an equaliser

Derby all but booked their place in the Sky Bet Championship play-offs when they came from a goal down to beat nine-man Huddersfield 3-1 at the iPro Stadium.

Nahki Wells put the Terriers in front, but Johnny Russell equalised before Joel Lynch was sent off for two yellow cards.

And after goalkeeper Alex Smithies slapped the ball into his own net, skipper Peter Clarke was also dismissed as Chris Martin sealed victory from the penalty spot with his 21st goal of the season.

It puts Derby 11 points clear of seventh place with four games to go, and means Huddersfield still have work to do to pull clear of the drop zone after a third consecutive defeat.

Derby had started with the confidence of a team almost guaranteed a top-six finish, and they nearly scored in the third minute when a Russell volley from outside the area was blocked one-handed by Smithies and Richard Keogh scooped the rebound over the bar.

Clarke was booked two minutes later for a deliberate trip which halted a Will Hughes run, but the visitors had claims for a penalty waved aside by referee Darren Deadman when Danny Ward went over in the ninth minute.

However, Ward was smiling five minutes later when he provided the low cross from the right which travelled all the way to the back post, where Wells had a simple tap-in from two yards.

Derby almost conceded again in the 20th minute when a mistake by Keogh allowed Wells to run into the box, but Lee Grant raced out to deny the striker his second goal.

It was a big moment because, eight minutes later, Derby were level when a George Thorne pass sliced Huddersfield open and Russell cleverly flicked the ball over Smithies from just inside the box.

Huddersfield were reduced to 10 men two minutes before the interval when Lynch, who had already been booked for time wasting, caught Patrick Bamford late on the left touchline and was shown a second yellow card.

Bamford was able to continue after treatment and wasted a great chance when he blazed over from 10 yards, but the advantage was now with Derby and they were literally given a helping hand by Smithies in the 50th minute.

A cross from Craig Forsyth was totally misjudged by the keeper, who palmed the ball one-handed into his own net.

And it got even worse for Huddersfield, who had Clarke sent off for the foul which also earned Derby a penalty.

The defender clearly caught Hughes and, after Clarke had been shown his second yellow, Martin sent Smithies the wrong way with a spot-kick into the bottom left corner.

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Matches

Table

Sky Bet Championship

Sky Bet Championship
Pos Team P Pts
1 Bournemouth 21 39
2 Middlesbrough 21 39
3 Derby County 21 38
4 Ipswich Town 21 38
5 Brentford 21 37
6 Watford 21 35
7 Norwich City 21 33
8 Blackburn Rovers 21 31
9 Nottingham Forest 21 30
10 Charlton Athletic 21 30
11 Cardiff City 21 30
12 Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 30
13 Sheffield Wednesday 21 28
14 Fulham 21 25
15 Birmingham City 21 25
16 Reading 21 25
17 Huddersfield Town 21 24
18 Bolton Wanderers 21 23
19 Leeds United 21 23
20 Millwall 21 23
21 Rotherham United 21 21
22 Brighton and Hove Albion 21 18
23 Wigan Athletic 21 17
24 Blackpool 21 13