Derby County 1 West Ham United 1

Last updated : 29 September 2004 By Footymad Previewer

For the second time in five days Derby County took the lead but failed to build on a promising start as West Ham hit back to draw in a match that ended in controversy.

After Michael Johnson's early header had been cancelled out by Matthew Etherington's strike, West Ham took control of the match but were fortunate not to have Bobby Zamora sent off five minutes from the end.

The striker appeared to stamp on Jason Talbot but referee Graham Poll only showed the former Brighton and Spurs striker a yellow card after consulting with his linesman.

Derby centre-half Mo Konjic was also booked for racing across to confront Zamora who could count himself fortunate to stay on the field.

The incident was out of keeping with a game that was played in a good spirit although there were few moments of genuine quality.

The Hammers had most of the possession but created few clear-cut chances while Derby hung on at times with Johnson outstanding in defence.

The Rams could not have asked for a better start when Johnson headed his first goal of the season from six yards out after the visitors had failed to clear a corner.

But within five minutes West Ham were level when Konjic only headed a Luke Chadwick cross into the path of Etherington and his low shot was deflected under Lee Camp.

Teddy Sheringham wasted a good chance a minute before half-time when he shot wide from 12 yards and the former England striker set up Nigel Reo-Coker early in the second half but his shot was cleared off the line by Jeff Kenna.

Derby's best moment involved Tommy Smith whose cross on the hour was headed over by Grzegorz Rasiak, and the Polish striker almost restored Derby's lead in the 76th minute.

Smith's run down the right took him past three players and his cross was met by Rasiak's near-post header which Stephen Bywater did well to hold.