London (AFP) – Wayne Rooney earned his first win as permanent Derby manager as the Rams beat Bournemouth 1-0 to climb out of the Championship relegation zone on Tuesday.
Rooney’s side lost to relegation rivals Rotherham in his first game since taking charge on a full-time basis following his spell as interim boss.
But the former Manchester United and England striker was able to celebrate a priceless three points after Krystian Bielik’s cool finish in the first half saw off promotion-chasing Bournemouth at Pride Park.
Derby moved above Rotherham, who were held to a 3-3 draw by Stoke, and the Rams are now two points above the bottom three.
“To get any win is great. Obviously I’ve not been looking at it like that (first win) as I’ve been doing it a while but yeah I’m delighted,” Rooney said.
“But most of all I’m really pleased for the players. It shows what a difference it makes playing with more desire, and that desire to stop crosses.
“I demanded a reaction tonight and in fairness it has been a difficult couple of weeks.”
Watford extended their impressive home record with a 1-0 win over Barnsley courtesy of Troy Deeney’s first-half penalty.
The Hornets moved up to third place — three points behind second-placed Swansea — as a result of a 10th victory in 13 games at Vicarage Road.
No club in the top four English divisions can boast as many home wins.
Barnsley find themselves seven points adrift of the play-offs.
Fourth-placed Reading strengthened their promotion push with a comfortable 3-0 victory over 10-man Coventry.
The Royals moved to within three points of the top two after stretching their unbeaten run to four matches.
Veljko Paunovic’s side went ahead in the 16th minute when top scorer Lucas Joao slotted home his 17th goal of the season from close range.
Andy Rinomhota made it 2-0 straight after half time and John Swift added a third with a superb 72nd-minute free-kick.
Coventry centre back Kyle McFadzean was sent off for his second yellow card for the foul that led to Swift’s goal.
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