Davies displays 'magnificent' grit
Derby County 2 Blackpool 1
Wednesday 07 March 2012
Steve Davies, starting only his second match since suffering a career-threatening head injury in October, scored two second-half goals last night to seal Derby County's first victory in eight Championship games after play-off candidates Blackpool had struck inside two minutes through Tom Ince.
Amazingly, given that the fractured skull he sustained against Southampton left him with a metal plate in his head, Davies followed up Saturday's headed goal at Birmingham by rising to convert Ben Davies' 75th-minute free-kick and complete Derby's fightback.
Ian Holloway, the Blackpool manager, cut an angry figure in the closing stages, later complaining about referee Carl Boyeson's alleged inability to spot blatant fouls on his strikers. The first half had been a different matter. "I didn't want it to end," he said, "because I was enjoying the way we were playing. But in the second half Derby began brightly whereas we started sluggishly and looked more like a diesel than a Rolls-Royce. They've got six points off us this season and it's all from set pieces. You've got to deal with them."
Andy Garner, the first-team coach at Derby, hailed Davies as "magnificent" and added: "I can't believe how many injuries he's had for a 24-year-old but one thing he can do is score a goal."
Blackpool led through Ince's 10-yard shot after Gareth Roberts failed to clear Stephen Crainey's cross. Derby levelled in the 51st minute when Davies' drilled free-kick deflected off a defender to leave Matt Gilks wrong-footed.
Ben Davies' set piece was met by his namesake, the Liverpudlian's eighth goal of the season, and even Holloway said he was "proud of that boy for getting over what happened to him".
Derby County (4-4-2): Fielding; Green, Barker, Shackell, Roberts; Bryson, Hendrick, Carroll (Tyson, 68), B Davies; Robinson, S Davies (Buxton, 89). Substitutes not used Legzdins (gk), Ball, Doyle.
Blackpool (4-4-2): Gilks; Eardley, Baptiste, Wilson, Crainey; Ince, Southern, Ferguson, Ormerod (M Phillips, 54); K Phillips (LuaLua, 87), Bednar (Taylor-Fletcher, 59). Substitutes not used Cathcart, Sylvestre.
Referee C Boyeson (Yorkshire).
Latest in Sport
Luckless Abou Diaby full of confidence as he attempts yet another Arsenal comeback
Arturo Vidal: Midfielder must ask to join Manchester United, say Juventus
Scottie dogs in Commonwealth Games opening ceremony 'disrespectful to Muslims', say Malaysian politicians
Calum Chambers joins Arsenal: Gunners complete £16m transfer of right-back
Manchester United latest: Angel Di Maria move no closer as Juan Mata emerges as Louis van Gaal's favoured No 10 as prospect of signing
- 1 'Women should not laugh in public,' says Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister in morality speech
- 2 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 3 Is Ebola coming to Britain? UK health officials issue warning to doctors as outbreak fears grow
- 4 Richard Dawkins says 'date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse' on Twitter
- 5 Danish TV reporter is all business up top, all party down below
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
Were 'Poor Doors' added to mixed developments so wealthy residents don't have to go in alongside social housing tenants?