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Page last updated at 18:57 GMT, Saturday, 31 January 2009

Derby 2-1 Coventry

Two goals in two first-half minutes earned Nigel Clough his first victory as Derby manager and lifted the Rams out of the Championship drop zone.

Rob Hulse twice went close before heading Derby ahead from close range when Coventry failed to clear a corner.

Hulse then teed up Kris Commons whose 10-yard shot made it 2-0.

Derby had chances to put the game out of sight but Michael Doyle made it 2-1 from six yards after good play from Clinton Morrison.

Derby manager Nigel Clough:

"This is a terrific result for us but it is important to stress that it is only a very small step forward.

"The first-half performance was magnificent. With slightly better finishing and that elusive bit of luck we would have been out of sight.

"A third goal would have killed the game off and we could have got it at any point in the first half.

"At 2-0 it is lovely but it is a dangerous scoreline because if they get a goal back early after the break - like they did - it makes for a nervous second half."

Coventry manager Chris Coleman:
"We just couldn't cope with Derby's tempo.

"They were quicker to every ball and they won every challenge in our box - that can't be right."

Derby: Bywater, Connolly, Albrechtsen, Addison (McEveley 46), Stewart, Barazite (Sterjovski 62), Savage, Green, Teale, Hulse, Commons.
Subs Not Used: Carroll, Villa, Varney.

Booked: Savage.

Goals: Hulse 14, Commons 16.

Coventry: Westwood, Wright, Hall, Ward, Fox, Henderson, Beuzelin, Doyle (Sawyer 86), Bell, Morrison, Eastwood (McKenzie 46).
Subs Not Used: Marshall, Thornton, Wynter.

Goals: Doyle 53.

Att: 29,710.

Ref: M Jones (Mansfield).

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