Frank Lampard hailed Martyn Waghorn’s quality on and off the pitch after the striker joined the 100 club in Derby’s 2-0 win over Hull.
Waghorn responded to Lampard’s decision to play him as the main striker by netting his 100th career goal near the end of a tight first half.
Hull should have been ahead when Kamil Grosicki had the goal at his mercy from 12 yards but hit the outside of the post and the visitors were made to regret that when Waghorn pounced in the 41st minute.
A clever pass from Duane Holmes sent him in behind Hull’s backline and although David Marshall saved, he drove the rebound in.
Fikayo Tomori headed a corner wide before Hull went close on the hour when Grosicki’s cross was glanced inches wide by Jackson Irvine.
Waghorn made sure of the double over Hull to go with Derby’s Carabao Cup win at the KC Stadium when he dispatched Jayden Bogle’s low cross in the 71st minute.
“The best thing about the game was we were clinical in our finishing with two great finishes from Martyn Waghorn and in the end it was pretty comfortable against a good team,” Lampard said.
“There’s no absolute science to it, I’ve been using him as a right winger at times, coming inside and we’ve had Jack Marriott on good form and David Nugent offering a lot in different ways but I just felt the time was right for Waggy to play there.
“When he first came here I maybe asked for different things from what he was being asked at Ipswich last year, he’s very aware of that now and he gave everything today. It was an all-round performance of work rate, quality, hold-up play and two great goals.
“His career has taken him to a lot of places, I know first hand the lad that he is now, he’s fantastic for me in the dressing room in what he gives off to the rest of the squad but more than that his quality on the pitch.
“It was nice to feel pretty comfortable in the last 10 minutes and be able to get Andy King on the pitch and Ashley (Cole) albeit briefly.”
Hull manager Nigel Adkins was left to reflect on Grosicky’s miss and what he admitted was a “shocking “ goal to concede.
“We did really well to create a situation with a great square pass from Fraizer Campbell to put Kamil free for basically an open goal and he hits the post so that could have changed the complexion of the game.
“We had a few ifs buts and maybe but for me we’ve conceded a shocking goal, there’s a tackle to be made in the middle of the pitch and we haven’t made it which is really poor.
“We knew the wide players would be coming in off the line and the full backs are highlighted to make sure we get good defensive blocks in but we haven’t done it.
“That was really disappointing and then we were just about to make a change in the second half and again basic defending to create an opportunity for them to go and score that can’t happen but has happened which makes it more challenging for us.”