Match ends, Derby County 2, Wigan Athletic 1.
Mason Bennett's sublime volley and Scott Malone's strike saw Derby County come from behind to get their play-off push back on track with a gutsy win over Wigan Athletic.
The Latics led from a Derby corner when ex-Rams man Michael Jacobs surged forward on the left and slipped a fine pass to Gavin Massey who slotted the ball under keeper Scott Carson.
But the Rams, who had lost three league games in a row, levelled through Bennett's stunning volley as they improved after the interval.
And Scott Malone's simple close-range finish earned victory to put them level on points with sixth-placed Bristol City.
Wigan, who were five games unbeaten prior to their trip to Pride Park, have still only won once away from home in the league this season, but remain three points clear of the relegation zone.
However, they will feel they should have had at least a point despite a bright start by Derby in front of a noisy home support.
Derby, thumped 4-0 by Aston Villa on Saturday, began with decent urgency and threatened early on mainly through their lively top-scorer Harry Wilson.
But after Massey's brilliant breakaway goal they struggled to create chances for the rest of the half, in fact, Wigan very nearly doubled their advantage through Leon Clarke's back-post header.
He headed over again, this time from from five yards, when he should have scored and Derby then made Wigan pay through substitute's Bennett sumptuous improvised first-time finish.
Malone's strike, after some good work by Wilson, Jayden Bogle and Duane Holmes, earned a vital win, while Martyn Waghorn almost added a third with a shot from a tight angle that hit the post in injury time.
Derby boss Frank Lampard said:
"When you're in difficult form and things are going against you, it takes character and fight to get out of it. This is as proud as I've been this season.
"We have a young, transitional team. People expect it to be rosy and that we'll win every week, but it doesn't work like that.
"I massively appreciate the support and the players do as well. We have a responsibility to the fans and they stuck with us. If we're going to be successful, we all have to be together. The fans were great.
"Mason's goal was an incredible strike. The last time I felt like that was when Gareth Bale scored in the Champions League final [for Real Madrid against Liverpool last season]. The whole stadium gasped."
Wigan boss Paul Cook told BBC Radio Manchester:
"We go home with nothing so there are no positives to take for me.
"We move on and we have Reading on Saturday. To retain our status in the league we need to win games.
"I don't know if their first goal was a worldie or a fluke but the whole atmosphere and the momentum of the game changed with that moment."
- 5TomoriBooked at 71mins
- 15JohnsonBooked at 41mins
- 7H WilsonBooked at 63minsSubstituted forNugentat 88'minutes
- 11JozefzoonSubstituted forHolmesat 57'minutes
- 14MarriottSubstituted forBennettat 57'minutesBooked at 59mins
- 6FoxSubstituted forNaismithat 33'minutes
- 11MasseySubstituted forPowellat 70'minutes
- 5MorsyBooked at 37mins
- 17JacobsSubstituted forWindassat 78'minutes
- Tony Harrington
- Shots on Target
Second Half ends, Derby County 2, Wigan Athletic 1.
Attempt blocked. Sam Morsy (Wigan Athletic) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Lee Evans with a headed pass.
Martyn Waghorn (Derby County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Kal Naismith (Wigan Athletic).
Attempt missed. Leon Clarke (Wigan Athletic) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Kal Naismith with a cross following a set piece situation.
Foul by Jayden Bogle (Derby County).
Kal Naismith (Wigan Athletic) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Martyn Waghorn (Derby County) hits the left post with a left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box. Assisted by Jayden Bogle with a cross.
Substitution, Derby County. David Nugent replaces Harry Wilson.
Attempt missed. Nick Powell (Wigan Athletic) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Leon Clarke.
Offside, Derby County. Harry Wilson tries a through ball, but Martyn Waghorn is caught offside.
Duane Holmes (Derby County) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Reece James (Wigan Athletic).
Attempt missed. Nathan Byrne (Wigan Athletic) right footed shot from outside the box is too high. Assisted by Lee Evans.
Harry Wilson (Derby County) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Reece James (Wigan Athletic).
Delay over. They are ready to continue.
Delay in match Mason Bennett (Derby County) because of an injury.
Goal! Derby County 2, Wigan Athletic 1. Scott Malone (Derby County) left footed shot from very close range to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Jayden Bogle.