EFL Wrap

Unhappy Derby County return for Richard Keogh in Huddersfield defeat

Meanwhile, Norwich City stretched their lead at the top of the Championship.

LAST UPDATE | 23 Feb 2021

REPUBLIC OF IRELAND international Richard Keogh return to Derby County went poorly, as his Huddersfield Town side lost 2-0 at Pride Park. 

Derby terminated Keogh’s contract following an internal 2019 investigation for what they called “gross misconduct”, after Keogh had been injured in a car crash with then-teammates Tom Lawrence and Mason Bennett.

Lawrence and Bennett, who later admitted to drink-driving charges, were both fined the equivalent of six weeks’ wages – the maximum contractual limit – by Derby but not dismissed. Keogh instead dropped into League One with MK Dons, where performances earned him a return to the Championship with a January transfer to Huddersfield. 

Tonight marked Keogh’s first game against Derby since leaving the club, with Derby manager Wayne Rooney insisting pre-game his players should keep their focus and put all conversations with Keogh off until after the game. 

It proved an unhappy return for Keogh, as goals in either half by George Edmundson and Martin Waghorn gave Rooney’s side a 2-0 win, lifting Derby up to 19th in the league and a place above Huddersfield. 

Jason Knight played all but the final minute for Derby, while Huddersfield saw substitute Jaden Brown sent off for two bookings in the game’s closing 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, Norwich stretched their lead at the top of the Championship to 10 points courtesy of a 3-1 win away to Birmingham, who precariously sit a single place outside of the relegation zone. Teemu Pukki scored twice – his first-half goal was cancelled out by the Blues’ Ivan Sanchez – with Oliver Skipp adding a late goal to further gloss the scoreline. Scott Hogan played the full game for Birmingham, while Adam Idah played the final couple of minutes off the bench. 

Middlesbrough’s play-off aspirations took a hit in 3-1 defeat at home to Bristol City.

Further down the table, a Ryan Yates goal secured Chris Hughton’s Nottingham Forest a crucial victory over Rotherham, for whom Kieran Sadlier made a return after a lengthy injury lay-off as an 80th-minute substitute. Rotherham are in the relegation zone, with Forest now 10 points clear. 

Bottom-of-the-table Wycombe Wanderers shocked fifth-placed Reading 1-0, thanks to a Fred Onyedinma goal early in the second half. 

Elsewhere, Millwall and Luton drew 1-1. 

In League One, Irish U21 midfielder Jack Taylor scored in Peterborough’s 3-0 win at Plymouth, while Aiden O’Brien was on target in Sunderland’s 2-0 win over Fleetwood.

Peterborough are top of the league, with Lincoln second after a 2-2 draw with Swindon. 

Gavin Bazunu kept a clean sheet for Rochdale in a 0-0 draw at Northampton, while Joey Barton tasted defeat in his first game as Bristol Rovers manager, going down 2-1 at home to Wigan. 

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