Derby County 4 (Martin 3, 28, Johnson 45+3, Russell 57)
Wolves 2 (Afobe 28, Le Fondre 63)
For a second season in succession, Wolves’ trip to the East Midlands to take on Derby proved fruitless as once again they failed to contain the firepower of a rampant County side.
Jed Wallace came in for Sheyi Ojo as the only change to the team that had beaten Huddersfield Town at Molineux a fortnight earlier. Ojo took a place on the bench.
The visitors got off to the worst possible start as they fell behind in only the third minute with Rams skipper Chris Martin hitting an unstoppable shot into the top corner from just outside the area.
It took a flying leap from Emi Martinez to prevent a second five minutes later when Johnny Russell’s corner was headed out to George Thorne who, from fully 30-yards, hit a stunning volley that was arrowing towards the same part of the net as Martin’s strike.
Wolves won their first corner of the game in the 19th minute and from it came the equaliser. James Henry hit the flag kick low into the area and Wallace stepped over the ball allowing it to run through to Benik Afobe who fired into the roof of the net.
From the restart Derby could have been back in front with Martinez just managing to hold on to a deflected effort from Jeff Hendrick.
Some great work by Henry saw him getting in a good cross despite being fouled by Craig Forsyth. Wallace, on the far side of goal, headed the ball back into the middle where Adam Le Fondre turned and got in a shot that was blocked by Richard Keogh.
Derby retook the lead in the 28th minute with Martin once again the man doing the damage as he beat Martinez to Bradley Johnson’s cross to nod home.
A low cross from Henry deserved as better fate than to roll through the six-yard box and out for a throw-in on the far side.
Martinez had to move smartly to gather a low drive from Hendricks before, in stoppage time, County added a third.
In a frenetic finish to the half, Tom Ince’s run was blocked by Danny Batth on the corner of the box and the referee pointed to the spot. Martin’s penalty was well saved by Martinez who guessed correctly diving to his right.
But, from the corner conceded, taken by Russell, the ball fell to Johnson whose half hit shot bobbled into the net.
Half-Time: Derby 3 Wolves 1
Russell got in the first attempt of the new half with a shot on the run that Martinez took over his head.
Russell wasn’t to be denied, however, and he netted Derby’s fourth in the 57th minute. Scott Golbourne did well to block Johnson’s initial shot but when the ball bounced into the path of Russell he made no mistake from 10-yards.
With the game just having passed the hour mark, Kenny Jackett made a double change with Ojo and Conor Coady replacing Wallace and Jack Price respectively.
And Ojo soon made his mark as he headed Henry’s cross down to Le Fondre who hooked the ball past Scott Carson in the 63rd minute to reduce the deficit.
Ince was just wide with a long-range effort and Martinez saved from Johnson as the home side went in search of further goals.
Bright Enobakhare was a late change for Le Fondre and the youngster soon found himself staring at a yellow card after he had upended Russell some 22-yards out. Ince’s free-kick cleared the bar.
Ince was booked himself for fouling Ojo just to the left of the County box but Henry’s free-kick drifted behind as the Rams comfortably held on to their advantage.
County: Carson, Christie (Baird 78), Forsyth, Keogh, Hendrick (Butterfield 74), Martin (capt) (Bent 89), Russell, Shackell, Johnson, Ince, Thorne.
Unused subs: Grant, Weimann, Shotton, Warnock.
Booking: Ince (88 – foul).
Wolves: Martinez, Iorfa, Golbourne, Price (Coady 61), Batth (Capt), Hause, Henry, McDonald, Le Fondre (Enobakhare 82), Afobe, Wallace (Ojo 61).
Unused subs: Ikeme, Doherty, van La Parra, Byrne.
Bookings: Batth (45+1 – foul), Enobakhare (86 – foul).
Referee: A. Madley.
Wolves Under 18s 2 (Delacoe, Carnat) Blackburn Rovers 2