Bristol City 3-2 Derby: £ 4 million new boy Nahki Wells and loaned Filip Benkovic bag first goals for club while Robins increases play-off push despite late fightback
- Forward Wells marked its first start for the Robins with a powerful header
- Benkovic batted in to nod the second and Diedhiou added the third
- Martyn Waghorn gave Derby a lifeline and Chris Martin made for an exciting finish
Nahki Wells scored his first goal for Bristol City as they await a tough comeback from Derby to claim an exciting Sky Bet Championship win over Ashton Gate.
The hosts took a 38-minute lead when Niclas Eliasson’s deep cross was knocked from the right by Jay Dasilva for Wells to mark his first start for the Robins with a powerful header.
It was 2-0 just before the break when Derby was found in the air again. Famara Diedhiou’s header from a right hook was blocked, but Filip Benkovic’s center back kicked in to nod home.
Forward Nahki Wells opened his account for Bristol City after a £ 4m transfer from Burnley
The rams did not learn their lesson and Ashley Williams headed a new Eliasson cross for Diedhiou to hit a third home after 58 minutes.
It all seemed to be over, but three minutes later Martyn Waghorn dived home to go home a Max Lowe cross and cause a spell of intense Derby pressure.
Chris Martin tapped a low cross from Tom Lawrence after 82 minutes to make a furious finish in which Lawrence saved a deflected shot by goalkeeper Dan Bentley of the city.
The Bristol City striker went home close up in the 38th minute on Wednesday
MATCHING FACTS AND LEADING LIST
Bristol City: Bentley, Hunt, Williams, Benkovic, Dasilva, Eliasson (Weimann 86), Smith (O’Dowda 78), Henriksen, Paterson, Diedhiou, Wells (Rowe 77).
Subs not used: Baker, Pereira, Wollacott, Palmer.
goals: Wells 38, Benkovic 44, Diedhiou 58.
Derby: Hamer, Bogle, Wisdom, Clarke, Lowe, Bird (Marriott 89), Holmes, Waghorn, Rooney, Lawrence, Martin.
Subs not used: Forsyth, Shinnie, Jozefzoon, Roos, Davies, Knight.
goals: Waghorn 61, Martin 82.
Ref: Geoff Eltringham (Tyne & Wear).
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Diedhiou and substitute Andreas Weimann missed great chances of stoppage to make the 4-2 at death, but the final whistle was greeted with cheers of relief from home defenders.
The first half had been a tightly fought affair to Wells’ opener. Waghorn, who took an early yellow card for a late challenge, fired far away for Derby after three minutes.
Wayne Rooney was cheered on by some of City fans and lured by others as he tried to get the hang of it for the visitors from a deep midfield role.
His efforts gave Derby the lead and Duane Holmes forced a rescue from Bentley in his near post with a 17-minute ride.
Defender Filip Benkovic doubled the home team’s advantage just before half-time
Benkovic headed over from an Eliasson corner and debutante midfielder Markus Henriksen fired from 25 meters wide when City first exerted pressure.
After Wells broke the deadlock, Lee Johnson’s team produced their best football and Diedhiou saved Ben Hamer with a deflected shot.
The second goal was good with City at the top, but Rooney saw the last half action wide from the edge of the box.
Striker Famara Diedhiou added the third for Bristol City in the 58th minute
If the home team thought they were home and dry when Diedhiou made it 3-0, they were about to wake up when the Waghorn riposte put his side in the best spell.
There was a loud call for a penalty when Williams seemed to block a cross with an arm.
On the other hand, Wells shot high over the bar of an excellent opportunity and it was end-to-end action because both teams are committed to attack.
After losing four of their previous six home games, it was a huge result for City in their play-off challenge.
Martyn Waghorn dived home to go home a Max Lowe cross and cause a spell of intense pressure
Chris Martin tapped a low cross from Tom Lawrence home to set up a hectic finish