Football: Smith the great motivator

Derby County 3

Arsenal 0

Jim Smith, suit freshly pressed and with surviving hair combed neatly into place, looked more like a retiring sales director than an active football manager as the chairman presented him with a set of golf clubs. A pension and a quiet life on the links, however, is the last thing he is thinking about.

The clubs, a gesture of appreciation from his eighth employer, were to mark Smith's 25 years in the game's toughest job. Yet, after a quarter of a century, his enthusiasm is undimmed.

But not so long ago his palate was so jaded he effectively quit, becoming chief executive of the Football Managers' Association, a post he did not expect to relinquish for a return to the front line.

Derby tempted him back, though, and Smith has rediscovered his sparkle. What is more, he has shown himself, even at 57, to be as tuned in to the modern game as anyone.

To some he is the epitome of the old-fashioned English manager, yet there is no team more cosmopolitan than his and few coaches more tactically astute. Here, for example, having been fortunate to reach half-time on level terms against Arsene Wenger's team, for whom Ian Wright, perhaps critically, missed a first-half penalty, Smith changed his formation, gave key individuals new responsibilities and turned the contest round.

These are not skills Smith has acquired suddenly, of course, but now he has the players who can make his ideas work - and most of them hand- picked by himself.

On Saturday, one could marvel at Smith's judgment in picking Francesco Baiano ahead of Roberto Baggio last summer as the forward from Fiorentina give an excellent demonstration of how to make the deep-lying third striker's role so effective.

Although the pace of Dean Sturridge was a factor in two of the goals, Baiano's influence had a greater range, providing the vital cog in so much of Derby's movement.

And then, of course, there was Paulo Wanchope, whom one expects to lose his legs at any moment but instead keeps scoring goals - nine in his last 10 starts.

Smith cannot claim to have combed the beaches of Costa Rica in search of this particular gem - as with so many modern imports, the Wanchope story began with an agent's video tape - but it was he who decided to risk pounds 600,000 of Derby's money on him. What a bargain he is proving.

"What can you say? He's very lucky as well as very skilful," Smith said, having watched Wanchope catch out an unsighted David Seaman and then take advantage of Nigel Winterburn's mistake to put Derby two up. "But what I really like about him is how he works so hard for the team and there's no doubt about it, he's a real handful and he does frighten players," he said.

Arsenal, even against a Derby side depleted by injuries, looked to have forgotten how to score, a failing Wenger would not blame solely on the absence of the suspended Dennis Bergkamp. "We didn't score in the last two games when he was there," Wenger said. "We don't create enough, it's a collective problem rather than an individual one."

Goals: Wanchope (46) 1-0; Wanchope (65) 2-0; Sturridge (82) 3-0.

Derby County (4-3-1-2): Poom; Rowett, Laursen, Carbon, C Powell; Solis (Kozluk, h-t), Carsley, D Powell; Baiano (Trollope, 86); Wanchope, Sturridge (Burton, 86). Substitutes not used: Hunt, Hoult (gk).

Arsenal (4-4-2): Seaman; Dixon, Bould, Adams, Winterburn (Wreh, 69); Parlour, Vieira, Platt, Petit; Anelka (Boa Morte, 69), Wright. Substitutes not used: Grimandi, Hughes, Manninger (gk).

Referee: P Alcock (Redhill).

Bookings: Derby Wanchope, Rowett; Arsenal Bould, Winterburn, Boa Morte.

Attendance: 30,004.

Man of the match: Baiano.

Life and Style
The Google Doodle celebrating the start of the first day of autumn, 2014.
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
News
Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, left, with her daughter, Bristol
newsShe's 'proud' of eldest daughter, who 'punched host in the face'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden pictured in The Zookeeper's Son on a late-night drinking session
rugby
News
A cabin crew member photographed the devastation after one flight
news
Life and Style
Carol O'Brien, whose son Rob suffered many years of depression
healthOne mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of Dark Side of the Moon
musicCan 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition? See for yourself
News
Rob Merrick's Lobby Journalists were playing Ed Balls' Labour Party MPs. The match is an annual event which takes place ahead of the opening of the party conference
newsRob Merrick insistes 'Ed will be hurting much more than me'
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
News
Liam Payne has attacked the media for reporting his tweet of support to Willie Robertson and the subsequent backlash from fans
peopleBut One Direction star insists he is not homophobic
Life and Style
healthFor Pure-O OCD sufferers this is a reality they live in
Life and Style
Sexual health charities have campaigned for the kits to be regulated
healthAmerican woman who did tells parents there is 'nothing to be afraid of'
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
The John Peel Lecture has previously been given by Pete Townshend of The Who, Billy Bragg and Charlotte Church
musicGodfather of punk will speak on 'free music in a capitalist society'
News
peopleAt least it's for a worthwhile cause
News
Shoppers in Covent Garden, London, celebrate after they were the first to buy the iPhone 6, released yesterday
tech
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Pharmaceutical Computer System Validation Specialist

£300 - £350 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Pharmaceutical Computer ...

High Level Teaching Assistant (HTLA)

£70 - £90 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Higher Level Teaching Assist...

Teaching Assistant

£50 - £80 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Randstad Education is the UK...

Senior Java Developer - API's / Webservices - XML, XSLT

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is currently ...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments