Millers lose to Robins
The Abbery Business Stadium (Whaddon Road)
30 December 2011 7.45pm
Attendance: 3,582 (315 Millers)
Rotherham United ended 2011 with one-nil loss against promotion chasing Cheltenham Town at Whaddon Road last night.
Both sides started lively and in the opening minute a shot from Robins` striker Jimmy Spencer had the Millers defenders watching as it flew over the bar while the Millers` first chance, a minute later, fell to Lewis Grabban who skied the ball over the bar at the other end. After that the Millers had a succession of corners, one that was nearly put into his own net by Marlon Pack, but Town 'keeper, Scott Brown was equal to them all. Then, on ten minutes, disaster stuck for the Millers when a Dale Tonge challenge got the ball from Bagasan Graham only for it to fall to Pack who hit a cracking shot from twenty-five yards leaving Conrad Logan no chance and the Millers` defenders looking crestfallen. The home side woke up after this and a few minutes later Logan did well to turn away a shot from Luke Garbutt and just before the half hour mark a good ball in from Josh Low but neither Russell Penn or Graham could get on the end of it. At the other end a ball from Tonge found Grabban who took a shot that was always going wide. On thirty-eight minutes, another good ball from Low found the head of James Spencer but his control was poor and it flew wide of the goal. In the final minutes of the half, Gareth Evans managed to get in from the left and let fly but the ball went just over the bar while a defensive mistake from Alan Bennett gifted the ball to Grabban who saw his shot cleared off the line by Luke Summerfield.
The Millers had the first chance of the second half when Evans clipped the crossbar with Brown scrambling to get back and Alex Revell, a problem to the Robins` defence all night, crossed in a good ball from the right, which Grabban was unable to get on the end of. On the hour mark the Millers had a clear case for a penalty when Michael Raynes nearly had his shirt pulled off his back as he knocked the ball down for Grabban, but referee Langford, who was stood watching the incident, shook his head. He was also, apparently, incapable of seeing handball`s as the Millers had at least two clear shouts for handball which were also ignored. At the other end Spencer had a shot that went just wide and Kaid Mohamed, on for Low, almost made an immediate impact but Logan made a good stop with the rebound falling to Spencer who fired over. Brett Williams came on for Jon Harley for the Millers and he had Brown stretching to stop his header going in the top corner and minutes later Brown did well to stop a Williams ' cross sneaking over the line. With four minutes added time the Millers got a bit careless and let Summerfield have a shot from range that Logan did well to hold onto at the second attempt.
It was frustrating sat watching last night and, until Williams was introduced for a poorly looking Harley, it was all looking a bit stale and, at times, I thought we were trying to walk the ball into the net.
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