Date: 3rd October 2010 at 10:17pm
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Derby County ended Swansea City’s winning start at home with a goalless draw at the Liberty Stadium.

The Rams battled well throughout the game and made it difficult for Rodgers’ side to create clear cut chances in a competitive game in front of 15,000 fans.

Rodgers was without top goalscorer Scott Sinclair and Darren Pratley – without the duo we weren’t the same attacking side at home and we struggled to show the same attacking intensity as we have done in previous games.

Angel Rangel returned at right back following an injury, while Andrea Orlandi and Cedric Van Der Gun were given starts in midfield. Craig Beattie was also back after injury and played 15 minutes as a second half substitute.

Derby approached the game similar to the way that Scunthorpe United did. They put us under constant pressure throughout the game and made it difficult for us to get into our usual passing game.

The only chances we created in the first 20 minutes was when Ashley Williams headed over the bar from a corner. Mark Gower also had a free-kick that was easily saved by the goalkeeper.

Nathan Dyer was having a lot of the ball on the right flank and while his pace and skills were causing problems for the Rams, his final ball kept letting him down. He was often getting behind the defence but his crosses weren’t effective.

Stephen Dobbie had our best chance of the first half after a superb turn on the edge of the box, before nut-megging a defender, but his strong left-footed shot was well-saved by the goalkeeper.

Neither goalkeeper had much to do during the 90 minutes as the majority of the game was played in the middle third. Derby County had a chance to open the lead in the second half when a low cross flew across the face of goal but nobody was able to get on the end of it.

Craig Beattie then came on with just less than 15 minutes remaining of normal time and the Scottish frontman had a couple of good chances on goal. His first opportunity came when he slid in at the far post to connect to a low cross but his effort was off target. His second effort was a better one though, chesting the ball down with his back to goal before an acrobatic shot went just wide of the target.

Jordi Lopez and Frank Nouble also came on from the bench and both performed quite well. Nouble’s pace and strength was useful as went in search of a goal. Lopez did well but could himself lucky that he was only given a yellow card when Derby County counter-attacked into space. Lopez brought a player down just outside the box and thankfully they weren’t able to trouble De Vries from the resulting free-kick.

It has to be said that captain Garry Monk was the weak link at the back. Far from solid alongside Ashley Williams, he gave possession away far too often in dangerous positions and was fortunate enough that none of his mistakes cost us.

Craig Beattie then had a third chance on goal. Chesting and heading the ball down but his right-footed shot went just wide of the target.

Derby County looked a tidy and very organised outfit and not many teams come to the Liberty Stadium and have more of the ball. Monk’s sloppy work in possession gave them chances to take all 3 points but their finishing did let them down.

The worst performance of the season of the Swans which ends our 100% winning record at home. Not a terrible display, but one that was missing that extra quality that Scott Sinclair gives us.

Swans: Dorus de Vries; Angel Rangel, Garry Monk (C),Ashley Williams, Alan Tate; Mark Gower, Andrea Orlandi, Joe Allen, Nathan Dyer, Cedric van der Gun, Stephen Dobbie.

Subs: Yves Makabu-Makalambay (GK), Neil Taylor, Craig Beattie, Jordi Lopez, Albert Serran, Lee Lucas.

Derby: Stephen Bywater, John Brayford, Shaun Barker, Dean Moxey, Paul Green, Robbie Savage (C), James Bailey, Kris Commons, Luke Moore, Tomasz Cywka, Alberto Bueno.

Subs: Saul Deeney (GK), Stephen Pearson, Chris Porter, Ben Pringle, Mark O’Brien, Ryan Noble.