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Football Reporting


Ikpeazu’s Wycombe Wanderers deny Rooney first win as Derby County interim manager

The Rams failed to win the three points that would have helped them gain momentum in their bid to move up the log

Uganda forward Uche Ikpeazu’s Wycombe Wanderers denied Wayne Rooney a first win since he took over as Derby County interim manager after a 1-1 draw at Pride Park on Saturday.

Derby County scored for the first time in nearly eight hours but a one-all draw against Wycombe Wanderers meant they will remain at the bottom of Championship table.

In the 17th minute, the visitors were forced to make a change when Curtis Thompson looked unable to continue with the game and Alexander Pattison came on.

Duane Holmes’ clever finish in the 36th minute ended Derby’s goal drought but Ikpeazu’s teammates look re-energised in the second half and scored an equaliser courtesy of Matt Bloomfield’s close-range strike in the 46th minute.

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Wycombe’s Gareth Ainsworth said the 1-1 draw against Rooney’s Derby was worth celebrating.

“Derby definitely had the first half but second half, I thought we were the better side and for me, it’s a huge point against a club that I don’t believe will be in the bottom three come to the end of the season,” Ainsworth told Sky Sports.

“We celebrated a point in League One away at Sunderland two years ago like it was the best thing that this club had ever done so to come to somewhere like Derby County and get a point I think is just phenomenal for Wycombe Wanderers.”

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On his part, Rooney praised his charges for the tactical improvement they showed on Saturday.

“We were a little bit more direct than we have been in recent weeks,” the former Manchester United star said. “We had to change something from the way we have been playing.

“I felt the experience coming into the team was vital, I wanted experienced players on the pitch who know the league and to try and get the ball forward quicker than we have done in recent games.

“I think that was needed. I can sit here and say we want to play football, make 600, 700 passes a game but at the minute the players aren’t in that frame of mind and aren’t confident enough to do that so the important thing for me was to try and simplify the game for the players and to get the ball forward.

“We created chances and went in at half-time 1-0 up and I stressed to the players how important the second goal is and we paid the price for not getting that second goal.

“But I have to remain positive, it’s a point, we’ve stopped the run of losing games and it’s a point we have to build on.”

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Ikpeazu, who is sidelined by an injury since before the last international break, might be involved in the next game against Stoke City on December 2.

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