WIN­LESS CLE­MENT CALLS FOR CALM

Rams in slug­gish start to sea­son

The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Nick Clowes

PAUL Cle­ment is ap­peal­ing for pa­tience af­ter his win­less start as Derby County head coach con­tin­ued against Charl­ton.

Chris Martin se­cured a point for the Rams af­ter Tony Watt had opened the scor­ing for the visi­tors three min­utes into the sec­ond half.

Two Cham­pi­onship draws and an early League Cup exit to Portsmouth in mid­week is not ex­actly the start Cle­ment de­sired af­ter tak­ing the reins at the iPro Sta­dium in the sum­mer, but the for­mer Real Madrid as­sis­tant man­ager is not pan­ick­ing.

“There is lots to build on – we’ll play worse this sea­son than this and win, I’m sure of that,” said Cle­ment.

“I’m pleased with the per­for­mance – par­tic­u­larly af­ter how we played in mid­week. But I’m not go­ing to get too ex­cited when we win, and not go­ing to get too down when we lose.

“I thought we cre­ated enough chances and con­trolled enough of the game to pos­si­bly de­serve a lit­tle more. On the chances count, we dom­i­nated and on the pos­ses­sion count we dom­i­nated but that’s football.”

Cle­ment has been busy in the trans­fer mar­ket this sum­mer but in­sists his busi­ness is far from fin­ished af­ter los­ing mid­field­ers Will Hughes and Craig Bryson to in­jury this week.

“If you look at the bench, we haven’t got a nat­u­ral midfielder on there,” he added.

“We want to get some­one in but it has got to be a qual­ity midfielder, we don’t just want to bring a num­ber in.”

For all of Derby’s at­tack­ing in­tent in the first-half, the fi­nal ball was of­ten lack­ing in qual­ity to re­ally test the Charl­ton de­fence. Tom Ince looked dan­ger­ous, as did Johnny Rus­sell, but Ad­dicks keeper Nick Pope was rarely tested.

Striker Martin scuffed an ef­fort wide while Ge­orge Thorne and Jeff Hen­drick both failed to hit the tar­get.

Charl­ton had the best chance to break the dead­lock on the halfhour mark af­ter a weak back­pass by Chris Baird al­most al­lowed Cris­tian Ce­bal­los to nip in, but exEng­land keeper Scott Car­son spared his skip­per’s blushes by com­ing to the res­cue to sweep up.

Derby were made to pay just three min­utes into the sec­ond half though as Charl­ton took the lead. Ex-Celtic trainee Watt un­leashed an ef­fort from 25 yards, which looped up off the out­stretched leg of Richard Keogh and sailed into the top cor­ner over the head of Car­son.

That shook the Rams back to life and they would have equalised had it not been for the quick re­ac­tions of Pa­trick Bauer, who cleared Hen­drick’s goal­bound ef­fort off the line.

The lev­eller did ar­rive, though, on 69 min­utes through a fa­mil­iar source as Martin, who net­ted 21 times last sea­son, turned in­side the box and ri­fled past Pope’s out­stretched hand.

Charl­ton had their chances to win it – no­tably through two ef­forts from Si­mon Makienok – but it was Cle­ment’s men who pressed hard­est late on and Pope had to be alert to tip Martin’s header over the bar in the dy­ing sec­onds.

Ad­dicks boss Guy Luzon said: “Four months ago we came here and we didn’t touch the ball.

“It was very im­por­tant for me that we showed progress and the team showed a lot of qual­ity.

“We had a lot of or­gan­i­sa­tion in the de­fen­sive side of the game.

“We changed the tac­tics in the sec­ond half, scored the goal and could have got a sec­ond to kill the game off.

“I think a lot of teams will lose points here be­cause Derby have a lot of qual­ity and, for me, are one of the best teams in the league.”

PIC­TURES: TFLP pho­tog­ra­pher

BAT­TER­ING RAMS: Chris Martin cel­e­brates with team-mates af­ter Derby’s pres­sure paid off with an equaliser. Inset, Tony Watt opens the scor­ing for Charl­ton

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