REPORT: Accrington Stanley 0-1 Derby County
Derby County are into the fifth round of the FA Cup after a narrow win at Accrington Stanley on Saturday.
Martyn Waghorn's goal 12 minutes from time proved the difference, both sides being reduced to ten men in a lively encounter and Accrington unlucky not to at least get a replay after a battling performance.
But in the end it was a below par Rams who progressed through and into Monday's draw.
Derby had the first chance of note seven minutes in as Scott Malone's cross was headed down by Waghorn but keeper Jonny Maxted was able to push the effort away.
At the other end, Sean McConville's cross found Jordan Clark unmarked but he couldn't divert his effort on target from six yards out.
Clark dragged an effort wide from distance on 25 minutes as the game struggled in the way of clear chances, Callum Johnson then driving a low effort past the far post after a good Stanley break two minutes later and McConville curling wide soon afterwards as the hosts began to become more of a threat in the final third.
Derby were having little influence up top, George Evans' weak shot deflected through to Maxted on 35 minutes, shortly before the visitors were then dealt a blow as Mason Mount left the pitch with an injury to be replaced by Mason Bennett.
Half-time arrived with the hosts having been the better side but without a goal to show for it.
Derby started the second-half brightly but the hosts had the first real chance as Dan Barlaser saw an effort blocked after a good move.
However, almost immediately, Barlaser's afternoon then ended prematurely as he was shown a second yellow card for a foul on David Nugent and the hosts were down to ten men.
Duane Holmes drove just wide of the target for the Rams as they aimed to make their numerical advantage count, then Billy Kee fired past the post at the other end as the hosts responded.
The Rams finally got the breakthrough on 78 minutes and it came from a short corner, Holmes bursting into the area and his pull back finding Waghorn whose shot found the net.
As the home side tried to force an equaliser, a counter-attack nearly brought the second with four minutes left as Holmes found Bennett but his shot was beaten away by Maxted.
There was more drama to follow, as Accrington sub Andy Smith was sent through on goal after his side cleared a Rams free-kick, but defender Jayden Bogle brought him down and was shown a straight red card for the foul.
From the free-kick, Kee fired an effort low towards the corner but keeper Kelle Roos pulled off a fine save to push the ball round the post.
More late pressure followed from Stanley as they battled for a leveller, but the Rams held on for a narrow but hard-earned victory and a place in the fifth round.
Accrington: Maxted, Johnson (Smith 84), Hughes, Skyes, Richards-Everton, Donacien (Brown 84)), Clark, Barlaser, Conneely (c), McConville, Kee
Subs not used: Evtimov, Zanzala, Rodgers, Mangan, Mingoia
Derby: Roos, Tomori, Wilson (Jozefzoon 72), Keogh, Mount (Bennett 37), Waghorn (Bird 89), Evans, Holmes, Nugent, Bogle, Malone
Subs not used: Mitchell, MacDonald, Mitchell-Lawson, Huddlestone
Ref: Jon Moss