REPORT: Derby County 0-0 Blackburn Rovers
Derby County and Blackburn Rovers played out an entertaining but frustrating goalless draw at Pride Park on Tuesday night.
Both sides had good chances to win the game, particularly the hosts in the first-half, but each lacked a crucial cutting edge when it mattered.
The clean sheets will have pleased the respective managers, Rovers in particular well organised as they frustrated the Rams, but there wouldn't be a great deal else for either boss to be thrilled about in the post match analysis.
Having won four games in a row the Rams have now gone two without either winning or scoring, and while their performance here was of a much higher quality and tempo than that at Rotherham on Saturday, there are still answers for Frank Lampard to find when it comes to the attacking third of the pitch.
After a quiet start, Florian Jozefzoon headed the first chance of the game wide after good work from Dave Nugent and Mason Bennett whose cross to the back post was just too high for Jozefzoon to direct accurately.
Then Mason Mount blasted too high from the edge of the box after more good work from Bennett as the Rams awoke in earnest around the ten minute mark.
Bradley Dack's low effort rolled harmlessly wide for Rovers a few minutes later, then on 26 minutes Mount's next effort from distance deflected off a defender and looped just over the top.
From another Mount deflected effort moments later, the corner saw Fikaho Tomori's overhead kick found its way to Richard Keogh a few yards out but keeper David Raya somehow kept the ball out.
Then Jayden Bogle broke into the penalty area but saw his low shot pushed away by Raya as the Rams began to turn the screw, Bogle trying again a few minutes later but his effort was straight at Raya this time.
Mount then sent an in-swinging free-kick just wide of the post eight minutes before the break, before Bennett broke forward well and hit a low shot that Raya had to be alert to push round the post.
Half-time arrived with the Rams well in control but lacking the final finish.
Mount went the closest so far just five minutes into the second-half, his 25-yard free-kick crashing back off the crossbar before Rovers cleared.
Rovers had offered nothing going forward but nearly went in front on the hour as Bradley Dack broke into the box and beat Carson to the ball but could only find the side netting from an angle. The Rovers fans at the other end thought it was in.
Then Cory Evans fired straight at Carson as the visitors finally showed some intent.
Jozefzoon and Bennett were unable to turn a good chance into the net after the Dutchman had got to the byline, Danny Graham shooting low and without enough power at Carson on 72 minutes as the game continued to threaten a goal without providing one.
Harry Wilson saw a penalty claim turned down on 77 as two Rovers defenders converged on him, ref Darren England not interested much to the annoyance of those behind the goal.
Chances still came as the game edged towards a conclusion, Mount shooting wide from just inside the penalty area and Elliott Bennett doing similar at the other end with a 25-yarder that wasn't far away, but ultimately a stalemate was to be the outcome.
Derby: Carson, Forsyth, Bryson, Tomori, Keogh (c), Mount, Jozefzoon (Wilson 68), Johnson, Bennett,(Waghorn 76) Nugent (Marriott 79), Bogle
Subs not used: Roos, Wisdom, Huddlestone, Malone
Blackburn: Raya, Nyambe, Williams, Smallwood, Armstrong (Reed 64), Bell, Dack, Lenihan, Evans, Conway (c) (Graham 32), Palmer (Bennett 53)
Subs not used: Leutwiler, Rothwell, Brereton, Downing
Ref: Darren England