Birmingham City manager Garry Monk stated that a poor second half cost them as they fell to a 3-1 defeat at Pride Park.
Derby County’s goals from Mason Bennett, Harry Wilson and Jack Marriott secured the three points for Frank Lampard’s side, who had fallen behind early on when Lukas Jutkiewicz got his eighth goal in the space of six matches.
For Monk, the result ended his side’s 11-match unbeaten run in the Sky Bet Championship and the defeat now leaves them in 10th place, three points behind the play-off places.
He felt that a very organised first-half performance was put to waste after the interval following a series of costly errors.
“The first half was good, exactly what we wanted”, said Monk.
“We were very disciplined and good defensively and we weren’t allowing them to play much.
“We were creating good chances and I think we had enough attacking moments and set plays which caused them enough problems and in terms of an away performance at a place like this, is very good.
“Not taking anything away from Derby, they had a very good second half, but we beat ourselves with the goals.
“When you lack that bit of concentration and the levels are a bit lower, at least in mistakes; we made mistakes for their goals which is unusual for us.”
Monk also talked about how the significantly reduced squad size that Birmingham have compared to other teams like Derby makes his job harder, particularly when playing sides with larger pools of players.
He added: “We haven’t got the biggest of squads, there can be injuries, suspensions and things, and that’s for us to deal with.
“We are who we are, everybody knows that we don’t have the luxuries like Derby and the bigger clubs, but I am not making excuses and we are where we are.
“We have good young players, whether or not they are good enough and ready yet is debatable.”
By Matt Iles at Pride Park, and Jonty Colman