Rowett’s Rams missing a ‘bit of extra brilliance’

Lucas Joao holds off County skipper Richard Keogh.....Pic Steve Ellis
Lucas Joao holds off County skipper Richard Keogh.....Pic Steve Ellis

Derby County boss Gary Rowett thought his side were missing a touch of magic on Tuesday night, as the Rams saw their long unbeaten run come to an end at Sheffield Wednesday.

Rowett’s men hadn’t lost a game in the Championship since the end of November prior to kick off at Hillsborough, but a brace from Lucas Joao saw the Owls to a 2-0 win.

The defeat - Derby’s first away from home since September - saw the Rams remain outside the automatic promotion places, sitting third in the table ahead of Wednesday’s home clash with Leeds United.

He said: “I don’t think we played badly, we’ve shown great levels of consistency but we just haven’t quite shown that little bit of extra brilliance that we’ve done in recent weeks.

“I am disappointed with the manner of the goals but I’m not too disappointed with the performance.

“I don’t think they troubled Scott Carson at all, he hasn’t had to make a save and sometimes those games go like that.”

Rowett felt that the crucial moments didn’t go Derby’s way at Hillsborough and the manager was disappointed with the goals that his side conceded, especially since they spent large portions of the game in control.

“I thought we actually moved the ball really well and got into some very good positions but just couldn’t take our chances or find that little bit of quality in the final third with the last pass or the last cross into the box,” he said.

“If you look at the manner of the goals, the first one is a ball between Fozzy and Johnno and they both know that they shouldn’t allow Hunt to get into that position.

“Again, to concede so early in the second half really knocks the stuffing out of us and once again it was a great finish for them but it’s a poor goal for us to concede.

“Other than that, there was parts of our performance that were better than they have been in previous games.”