The victory was enabled by Steve McClaren’s decision to take Darren Bent off the bench, as he bagged a telling brace inside the last half an hour, which turned out to be the difference between the sides.
Bent’s quality showed and the benefits of a partnership between himself and colleague Chris Martin are obvious.
Martin was quieter and although he started the game and worked hard, as always, he wasn’t able to make the difference by adding to his goal tally for this season.
Martin worked well with Bent and provided the former Premier League man with the opportunity to play how he wished, making different runs and pressing the Blackburn back four.
The reason they can work so well together is because they are different players and give their opposition different problems.
Bent is at his best when he’s harassing an opposition defender, pressing them and looking for a way through and past the back four.
Martin seems to prefer to drop off a little bit as he goes looking for possession, before turning and attacking to either shoot or pass the ball to a teammate in a better position.
They rotate effectively and that helps McClaren build different attacking methods into the team, which makes them less predictable for any side studying the way they play.
When Martin is off the boil, Bent has the ability to come in and play brilliantly and there will be occasions over the rest of the season when Martin makes the difference, as sides get to grips with Bent up front.
Here’s what Derby fans on Twitter had to say about Martin’s performance.
Is Chris Martin getting some stick on here tonight from Derby fans? Wtf he's class, simple as that— Karl Jeffries (@midlandno4) January 27, 2015
Derby should go up automatically this season.. No goals from Chris Martin so up steps Darren Bent— Kevin Ticehurst (@Kevintice83) January 27, 2015
Think my 3-2 Derby and Martin to score first has gone out the window— ryan0liver (@ryan0liversmith) January 27, 2015
I think tonight's proved that we need to play Bent up front with Martin until we get a decent replacement for Russell #dcfcfans— Craig Robinson (@Robo1992) January 27, 2015
Chrissy Martin looked so frustrated he didn't put Bennett's superb cross in the net before Bent scored, hope he gets a few goals soon COYRS— David Collier (@ramsfan364) January 27, 2015
Bent might be the striker we needed the poacher, Martin can make something from nothing but he's not always picking up the rebounds #dcfc— The illusive Man (@AJDT1997) January 27, 2015
dcfc_89) January 27, 2015
Martin had one of 'those days' where it just wouldn't go in for him. Ward looked good but Dawkins doesn't fit our high tempo game ATM #dcfc— Joel Moore (@jmDCFC) January 27, 2015