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Saturday 22 March 2014

On this day in 1997: Derby put four past Spurs

Looking back at Premier League history, we recall the Rams prevailing in a thrilling clash with Spurs

  • Dean Sturridge was among the scorers as Derby beat Spurs in a gripping encounter

  • With the score at 2-2, goals from Ashley Ward (pictured) and Sturridge sealed the win

  • Ronnie Rosenthal (pictured) and Jason Dozzell scored for the visitors at the Baseball Ground

Premierleague.com rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.

22 March 1997 – Derby County 4-2 Tottenham Hotspur

Derby County ended a run of three straight defeats in all competitions to earn a thrilling win over Tottenham Hotspur at the Baseball Ground.

The hosts opened up an early two-goal lead but the north Londoners levelled the match by the 50th minute, only for Derby finish strongly and win the contest.

The Rams, starting the day in 14th in the Barclays Premier League , three points clear of the relegation zone and six behind Spurs, made a bright start and took an early lead.

Robin van der Laan scored their 10th-minute opener after the visitors had failed to clear a long throw. In the 22nd minute it was 2-0 as Paul Trollope ran on to a pass from Chris Powell and finished confidently.

Ronnie Rosenthal, a 26th-minute substitute for the injured Andy Sinton, made an immediate impact for Spurs by pulling a goal back within three minutes of coming on and Jason Dozzell equalised five minutes after the break.

But Derby were not to be denied and Dean Sturridge restored their lead in the 68th minute when his shot diverted into the net off Spurs defender Colin Calderwood. Sixty seconds later, the Rams made the match safe when Ashley Ward scored from a corner.

Derby manager Jim Smith said: “We have defended quite well in a lot of our matches but we’ve lost in winning positions. I could see that happening again today because they came back at us and at 2-2 anything could have happened.”

The Rams, in their first top-flight season for six years, won 3-2 at Barclays Premier League leaders Manchester United in their next match and finished 12th. Spurs won only two of their final seven matches to come 10th.

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Key Points

  • Premierleague.com looks back through the annals of history of the competition
  • A memorable event or match from each day of the year will be selected
  • We remember when Derby came out on top in a six-goal thriller with Spurs at the Baseball Ground