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21:45 6th October 2012
By  Will Jago

Derby County 0 Albion 0

Albion were unable to find the finishing touch at Pride Park as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Derby County.

The Seagulls produced a spirited performance and were creative in attack but at the telling moment they were found wanting.

In contrast to the two recent home games, Albion's opposition were out of the blocks with a tenacious start, but Gus Poyet's side soon imposed their passing style onto the game.

And after a sustained period of pressure came Albion's first opportunity, with a move taken from the training ground.

David Lopez - making his first start for the club - picked out Andrea Orlandi hovering on the edge of the Derby box with a pin-point corner, and the former Swansea man met the ball with a stinging volley that was deflected wide off the back of Jeff Hendrick.

David also came close with a curling free-kick in the first half, after Ashley Barnes was chopped down in his tracks, but his effort was well saved by stand-in keeper Adam Legzdins, who replaced Rams number one Frankie Fielding owing to a groin injury.

Bruno returned to the Albion defence after a two-game absence with a tight groin and he was his usual assured self at the back. He also created a deep cross to Orlandi, whose header was off target.

Will Buckley was brought back into the starting line-up and it was his shot moments later that was blocked by a sliding Richard Keogh tackle, provoking huge penalty appeals from the Albion players for handball, but referee Andy Woolmer waved play on.

However the winger's impact was short lived and he was resigned to the bench through injury on the half-hour mark and was replaced by Stephen Dobbie.

Then Dobbie and Barnes linked up well with the ex-Swansea man stabbing the ball wide.

The Seagulls started the second half the brighter of the two sides and Liam Bridcutt's deflected shot was denied only by Legzdins's crossbar.

On the hour mark a neat passage of passing between Bruno and Dobbie set up David, but his left-footed shot was off target.

Moments later two Derby players almost deflected the ball into their net for an embarrassing opener but Legzdins brilliantly clawed the ball from the top corner onto the bar. The rebound dropped to Gordon Greer but his header was also wide of the mark.

Tomasz Kuszczak was called into action with 20 minutes left on the clock and he was required to show his class twice within a minute. First it was Michael Jacobs' stinging shot that was turned around his right post, then Craig Bryson's 20-yard fierce effort was beaten away by the outstretched Polish international.

As the clock counted down Derby put the Seagulls under sustained pressure, but neither side was able to break the deadlock.


Derby County: (4-4-2) Legzdins; Brayford, Keogh, Buxton, O'Connor; Coutts, Hendrick, Bryson, Hughes (Jacobs 46); Robinson (Davies 76), Sammon. Subs: Deeney; Gjokaj, Tyson, Bennett, Freeman.

Albion: (4-3-3) Kuszczak; Bruno, Greer, El-Abd, Bridge; Bridcutt, Dicker, Barnes; Orlandi (Hammond 61) ; Buckley (Dobbie 34), David. Subs: Ankergren (GK), Dunk, Calderon, LuaLua, Agdestein.

Referee: Andy Woolmer

Yellow Cards: Keogh (Derby); Bridcutt, Bridge (Albion)

Attendance: 22,059 (1,490 Albion)


    32,425 paving slabs were used to create the exterior concourse at the American Express Community Stadium.