Millers pipped by Cherries
Don Valley Stadium
2nd February 2010 7.45pm
Rotherham United lost three vital points at Don Valley this evening despite taking a first half lead from striker Tom Pope.
Within the first two minutes, the top scorers of both teams had had shots at goal. Adam Le Fondre had a shot from inside the box that cleared the bar while, at the other end, Brett Pitman saw a shot go wide of Andy Warrington's goal. Two minutes later Warrington blocked a shot by Pitman and then Ian Sharps made two clearances from Pitman corners while both Steve Fletcher and Josh McQuoid were keeping the Millers defence busy. The Millers had an appeal for a penalty turned down when Rhoys Wiggins appeared to handle on the line which seemed to spur Rotherham on because minutes later a cross from Marc Joseph found the head of Tom Pope and the striker got his second goal in two games. Gary Roberts tried a shot two minutes later from outside the area but it sailed over the bar before both Sharps and Pope cleared at the other end from Pitman with Warrington managing to parry the ball away from the striker.
Just two minutes of the second half had gone when Pitman skipped round Pablo Mills and put the ball into the top left hand corner of the net for the equaliser. Shwan Jalal, in the visitors goal, made two comfortable saves from Micky Cummins and Nicky Law but just before the hour mark the Cherries went into the lead. A cross from Pitman was headed out by a Rotherham player but only found Danny Hollands who drilled the ball past Warrington into the net. Seven minutes later, a Pitman corner was headed across goal by Steve Fletcher and, once again, Hollands was on hand to put the ball in the net from close range. The Millers were at sixes and sevens and the long balls from defenders were by-passing Cummins and Law in midfield and finding the defenders from the other side. Law had a feeble shot at goal and Le Fondre thought he'd scored when, it looked to all but the referee, like the ball had gone over the line before Jalal grabbed at it. In the final minutes of the game Mills got the ball from a Marcus Marshall corner but his header went over the bar. As the final whistle went, boos rang out from those Millers fans who hadn't left a freezing cold Don Valley.
Ronnie Moore came down from the stands when the equaliser went in but, for all the good it did, he might have been better sitting with the fans.