Derby County full-back Marcus Olsson returns to action after cruciate injury

Marcus Olsson in action for Derby against West Ham. Photo by Jez Tighe.
Marcus Olsson in action for Derby against West Ham. Photo by Jez Tighe.

Marcus Olsson returned to action for the first time in a year last night as he featured for Derby County's under-23 side.

Olsson, 30, played 45 minutes of the game with West Ham at Pride Park, assisting a goal for Jayden Mitchell-Lawson in a 2-2 draw.

And U23s boss Darren Wassall was delighted the Swede was able to use the game as a stepping stone to regaining full fitness.

He said: "It was great to see Marcus back. He’s had a long period of rehabilitation but he showed what a class act he is and I thought he did really well for the 45 minutes he played.

“He was also a great example to the young lads of how to perform.”

Derby led through Mitchell-Lawson's first-half goal before the Hammers levelled early in the second-half.

The Rams lead twice with Jayden Mitchell-Lawson providing the only goal of the first-half with his clinical finish, set up by Olsson with some fine work.

Xanda de Silva got West Ham level for the first time, on the hour mark, before Josh Shonibare was found at the far post by Alex Babos’s corner to restore the Rams’ advantage just five minutes later.

The Rams couldn’t hold on for the victory at Pride Park, however, as Nathan Holland slotted in to earn a point for the Hammers who were battling for their lives the division.

Wassall said: " “We were 2-1 up with ten minutes to go so it’s always frustrating to concede an equaliser late on, but it was probably a fair result when you reflect on the whole of the 90 minutes.

“West Ham are fighting for their lives in this division and came out all guns blazing, and you could probably say we were a bit fortunate to come in 1-0 up at half-time.

“We then responded pretty well in the second-half as we were better without the ball.”