A first-half goal from Brighton striker Craig Mackail-Smith was enough to earn his side a win over Derby County.

The Scotland international received the ball from Inigo Calderon 18 yards out and made no mistake, blasting the ball past Frank Fielding.

The win was the Seagulls' third in their last four matches after previously going nine without victory.

Defeat for Derby was their fifth straight loss and their ninth of the season so far.

The goal was Mackail-Smith's first in 10 games and enough to move the Seagulls back to the fringes of the play-off places.

They now sit level on points with sixth placed Leicester City, while Derby are 16th.

VIEWS FROM THE DRESSING ROOM

Derby County manager Nigel Clough:

"It just won't drop for us at the moment but in terms of the performance, we are very pleased with the way we played.

"That's the best we have played for weeks. It could have been over by half-time. We played some lovely football.

"But this horrible, horrible game that we are involved in sometimes doesn't give you what you deserve."

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Gus Poyet told BBC Sussex:

"We defended like we were in a war. We threw bodies. We tried to do everything to do everything possible to stop (them).

"They took big risks which is normal, and then you need to take that chance to go on and score the second goal. If not, you're going to suffer. I think I'm going to have a heart attack soon.

"We knew that Derby needed to win the game today. So we can call it a double factor, to play with the nerves of the opposition, but at the same time dealing with everything that was coming."

Lineup, Bookings (5) & Substitutions (5)

Derby

  • 01 Fielding
  • 03 Roberts
  • 05 Barker
  • 06 Shackell
  • 04 Bryson Booked
  • 16 Bailey
  • 18 B Davies (Bennett - 72' )
  • 23 Hendrick
  • 32 Green
  • 10 Ward
  • 33 Priskin Booked (Ball - 68' )

Substitutes

  • 13 Legzdins
  • 17 Buxton
  • 24 O'Brien
  • 25 Ball
  • 28 Bennett

Brighton

  • 16 Ankergren
  • 03 Greer
  • 05 Dunk Booked
  • 14 Calderon Booked (El-Abd - 49' Booked )
  • 20 Vincelot
  • 08 Navarro
  • 17 Harley
  • 26 Bridcutt
  • 07 Hoskins (Paynter - 82' )
  • 09 Barnes (Noone - 57' )
  • 12 Mackail-Smith

Substitutes

  • 01 Brezovan
  • 06 El-Abd
  • 11 Noone
  • 25 LuaLua
  • 13 Paynter
Ref: Salisbury
Att: 22,040

Match Stats

Shots

14 9

On target

7 4

Corners

6 7

Fouls

15 11

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +4:40 Full time

Full Time The referee ends the match.

90:00 +4:00

The ball is crossed by Craig Bryson. The ball is crossed by Craig Bryson.

90:00 +3:27

Foul by Billy Paynter on Jamie Ward, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Jamie Ward.

90:00 +2:57

James Bailey takes a shot. Blocked by Lewis Dunk. Inswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Jamie Ward, clearance by Lewis Dunk.

90:00 +0:55

Foul by Gareth Roberts on Craig Noone, free kick awarded. Free kick taken by Gordon Greer. Ryan Harley takes a shot. Shaun Barker gets a block in. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ryan Harley from the right by-line.

89:52

Billy Paynter fouled by Craig Bryson, the ref awards a free kick. Gordon Greer takes the direct free kick.

88:23

Craig Bryson produces a cross, Effort on goal by Mason Bennett from just inside the area clears the crossbar.

87:04

Jeff Hendrick produces a cross, clearance made by Alan Navarro.

86:03

Effort from the edge of the box by Callum Ball goes wide of the left-hand upright.

85:14

Paul Green delivers the ball, clearance made by Lewis Dunk.

84:47

The assistant referee flags for offside against Craig Mackail-Smith. Paul Green takes the direct free kick.

83:47

The ball is sent over by Jamie Ward. Callum Ball takes a shot. Gordon Greer gets a block in. Effort on goal by Mason Bennett from inside the penalty area goes harmlessly over the bar.

81:42 Substitution

Substitution Billy Paynter is brought on as a substitute for Will Hoskins.

80:20

Unfair challenge on Mason Bennett by Lewis Dunk results in a free kick. Jamie Ward takes the direct free kick.

80:20 Booking

Booking Lewis Dunk goes into the referee's book.

78:59

The ball is crossed by Craig Noone, Header from inside the area by Craig Mackail-Smith strikes the post. Will Hoskins produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the area which goes wide of the left-hand post.

76:37

Adam El-Abd challenges Jeff Hendrick unfairly and gives away a free kick. Jamie Ward crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left by-line, save by Casper Ankergren.

74:47

Jeff Hendrick sends in a cross, Lewis Dunk makes a clearance. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Jamie Ward, Jason Shackell has a headed effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the left of the target.

72:30

The referee blows for offside against Craig Mackail-Smith. Frank Fielding takes the free kick.

71:04 Substitution

Substitution Ben Davies goes off and Mason Bennett comes on.

70:36

Alan Navarro crosses the ball, clearance made by Gareth Roberts.

69:55

The ball is crossed by Paul Green, clearance by Gordon Greer.

68:06

Craig Noone produces a right-footed shot from just outside the box that goes wide right of the target.

66:58

Liam Bridcutt takes the direct free kick.

66:58 Substitution

Substitution Callum Ball on for Tamas Priskin.

66:58

Free kick awarded for a foul by Jason Shackell on Ryan Harley.

63:16

Frank Fielding restarts play with the free kick.

63:16 Booking

Booking The referee shows Adam El-Abd a yellow card for unsporting behaviour.

62:47

Adam El-Abd challenges Jamie Ward unfairly and gives away a free kick.

61:46

Effort from the edge of the penalty area by Craig Noone goes wide of the left-hand post.

60:50

The ball is swung over by James Bailey. The ball is swung over by Craig Bryson, Gordon Greer makes a clearance.

59:28

Will Hoskins crosses the ball, Shaun Barker makes a clearance. Outswinging corner taken by Ryan Harley from the right by-line.

58:29

Free kick awarded for a foul by Ben Davies on Romain Vincelot. Lewis Dunk restarts play with the free kick.

56:49

Ben Davies takes a shot. Blocked by Gordon Greer. Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ryan Harley by Jason Shackell. Direct free kick taken by Gordon Greer.

56:08

Paul Green produces a cross, Adam El-Abd makes a clearance.

56:08 Substitution

Substitution Craig Noone comes on in place of Ashley Barnes.

55:26

Gareth Roberts fouled by Ashley Barnes, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Jason Shackell.

54:56

Foul by Tamas Priskin on Liam Bridcutt, free kick awarded. Alan Navarro takes the direct free kick.

51:48

The referee blows for offside against Craig Mackail-Smith. Shaun Barker takes the free kick.

51:07

Gareth Roberts sends in a cross, Liam Bridcutt makes a clearance.

50:36

Centre by Jamie Ward, clearance by Lewis Dunk.

49:31

Adam El-Abd produces a cross, blocked by James Bailey. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ryan Harley played to the near post, clearance by Jason Shackell.

48:01 Substitution

Substitution Adam El-Abd is brought on as a substitute for Inigo Calderon.

46:53

Craig Bryson takes the free kick.

46:53 Booking

Booking Inigo Calderon is cautioned.

46:26

Free kick awarded for a foul by Inigo Calderon on Jamie Ward.

45:17

Shaun Barker concedes a free kick for a foul on Craig Mackail-Smith. Ryan Harley takes the direct free kick.

45:01

The referee gets the second half underway.

45:00 +5:13 Half time

Half Time The ref blows to end the first period.

45:00 +3:20

Direct free kick taken by Gordon Greer.

45:00 +3:20 Booking

Booking Tamas Priskin booked for unsporting behaviour.

45:00 +2:12

Foul by Tamas Priskin on Lewis Dunk, free kick awarded.

45:00 +1:02

Effort on goal by Gordon Greer from just inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.

45:00 +0:27

Romain Vincelot takes a shot. Tamas Priskin gets a block in. Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ryan Harley from the right by-line.

44:49

Ryan Harley takes the outswinging corner, Tamas Priskin manages to make a clearance.

44:03

Unfair challenge on Ashley Barnes by Gareth Roberts results in a free kick. Casper Ankergren restarts play with the free kick.

43:22

Ben Davies produces a cross, clearance by Gordon Greer.

42:21

Corner taken right-footed by Ryan Harley. Ryan Harley takes the inswinging corner, clearance by Gareth Roberts.

41:26

Ryan Harley takes the direct free kick.

41:26 Booking

Booking Craig Bryson receives a yellow card.

40:51

Craig Bryson concedes a free kick for a foul on Inigo Calderon.

38:59

Free kick awarded for a foul by Gareth Roberts on Ashley Barnes. Gordon Greer restarts play with the free kick.

37:14

Gordon Greer challenges Jamie Ward unfairly and gives away a free kick. Gareth Roberts takes the free kick.

32:59

A cross is delivered by Jamie Ward. Craig Bryson delivers the ball, save made by Casper Ankergren.

32:25

Lewis Dunk challenges Tamas Priskin unfairly and gives away a free kick. Paul Green restarts play with the free kick.

31:28

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Ashley Barnes by Gareth Roberts. Gordon Greer restarts play with the free kick.

30:42

The ball is delivered by Ben Davies, Ryan Harley manages to make a clearance.

30:30

Corner taken short by Ben Davies.

29:47

The ball is crossed by Jamie Ward, Casper Ankergren makes a comfortable save.

29:01

Jamie Ward takes a shot. Comfortable save by Casper Ankergren.

28:21

James Bailey has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the left-hand upright.

27:50

Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ben Davies from the right by-line.

26:43

Liam Bridcutt sends in a cross, Shaun Barker manages to make a clearance.

24:18

Jeff Hendrick produces a left-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the right of the goal.

21:45

The ball is sent over by Ben Davies.

20:42

Foul by Shaun Barker on Romain Vincelot, free kick awarded. Casper Ankergren takes the free kick.

20:05

Foul by Lewis Dunk on Tamas Priskin, free kick awarded. Jason Shackell takes the direct free kick.

19:24

Tamas Priskin challenges Liam Bridcutt unfairly and gives away a free kick. Gordon Greer takes the direct free kick.

16:55

Free kick awarded for a foul by Will Hoskins on Paul Green. Free kick taken by Paul Green.

15:50

Jeff Hendrick takes a shot. Casper Ankergren makes a save. The ball is delivered by Gareth Roberts, Gordon Greer manages to make a clearance.

15:23

The ball is delivered by Ben Davies, comfortable save by Casper Ankergren.

14:43

Tamas Priskin takes a shot. Lewis Dunk makes a clearance. Ben Davies takes the outswinging corner, Ryan Harley manages to make a clearance.

12:51

Assist by Inigo Calderon.

12:51 Goal scored

Goal! - Craig Mackail-Smith - Derby 0 - 1 Brighton A goal is scored by Craig Mackail-Smith from the edge of the area to the top right corner of the goal. Derby 0-1 Brighton.

12:47

A cross is delivered by Inigo Calderon,

11:42

Craig Bryson takes a shot. Casper Ankergren makes a comfortable save.

8:10

The ball is crossed by Gareth Roberts, Inigo Calderon gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken by Ben Davies from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Craig Mackail-Smith.

7:26

Ben Davies produces a cross, clearance by Liam Bridcutt.

6:45

The ball is swung over by Ryan Harley.

5:49

The ball is swung over by Craig Mackail-Smith, clearance made by Paul Green.

5:04

Jamie Ward delivers the ball, Lewis Dunk manages to make a clearance.

4:20

The ball is delivered by Tamas Priskin, Casper Ankergren makes a comfortable save.

2:06

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jamie Ward by Inigo Calderon. Ben Davies takes the free kick.

1:32

Will Hoskins takes a shot. Frank Fielding makes a comfortable save.

1:09

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Craig Mackail-Smith by Jason Shackell. Gordon Greer takes the free kick.

0:35

Tamas Priskin produces a right-footed shot from the edge of the box and misses to the right of the goal.

0:00

The ref blows the whistle to start the match.

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