Robert Glatzel scored his first goal for Cardiff as the Bluebirds hit back to hold Derby in a 1-1 draw at Pride Park on Friday evening.
Scott Malone landed an early blow when he tapped home Martyn Waghorn’s pass (6), but Glatzel scored his first goal since a summer move from FC Heidenheim from the penalty spot (19) to level the Sky Bet Championship match at the break.
Two minutes after the restart, Jack Marriott swivelled 20 yards out and crashed a shot off the crossbar, while Glatzel might have added a second with a late header but for Matt Clarke’s last-ditch clearance.
An open game meant a draw was, arguably, a fair result, though the Rams remain without a home win under Phillip Cocu, leaving them 18th in the table, while Cardiff are yet to taste victory on the road this season.
As the Sky Bet Championship returned after the international break, this game provided two underperforming sides the chance to move through the gears after, admittedly, below-par starts.
Cocu would, perhaps, have been less than enamoured with his Derby side’s recent results, though spirits were lifted when Malone struck inside 10 minutes, after Alex Smithies had swatted away Tom Huddlestone’s low shot.
Cardiff boss Neil Warnock made one enforced change for the trip to Pride Park, as Callum Paterson replaced Lee Tomlin, who was involved in a car accident earlier this week.
As Derby boss Phillip Cocu looked to arrest his side’s below-par start, the Dutchman made three changes from the side that lost 3-0 to Brentford before the international break: Lee Buchanan, Jason Knight and Kieran Dowell were replaced by Matt Clarke, Duane Holmes and Scott Malone.
Derby were guilty of conceding several needless set-pieces throughout the first half, but they were punished when Glatzel was awarded a penalty after being tugged to the ground by Rams skipper Richard Keogh. The relief was clear when he scored his first for the club after six appearances.
Replays later showed Waghorn might have had a penalty appeal of his own seconds earlier as he was tripped by Joe Bennett, yet referee Darren England failed to spot the Cardiff defender’s infringement.
The aforementioned striking of the crossbar from Marriott seconds after the restart did little to rattle Neil Warnock’s side, who went close to a winner of their own as the introduction of Junior Hoilett from the bench reinvigorated their attack.
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