Millers Held At Don Valley
Don Valley Stadium
6 March 2012 7.45pm
Attendance: 2,447 (137 Crewe fans)
Rotherham United had to settle for a point at Don Valley this evening as both theirs and Crewe's hopes of a play-off place took another step backwards.
The first quarter of an hour of the game was fairly quiet although new daddy, Lewis Grabban, put in a cross for Danny Schofield which was blocked by former Miller David Artell and Artell was on hand a few minutes later to block a shot from Grabban himself. On fifteen minutes, a poor backpass to Millers 'keeper Rhys Taylor, who wasn't really expecting it, ended in an equally poor mis-kick with the ball falling to Byron Moore, who ended up on the floor in the penalty area after a clumsy challenge from Jason Taylor. Referee Chris Sarginson pointed straight to the spot and Harry Davis placed the ball and slotted it past Rhys Taylor to put the visitors in the lead. If Jason Taylor had done better with a shot three minutes later the scores would have been level but his shot didn't even trouble Steve Phillips in Crewe's goal as it sailed over the crossbar. A succession of corners followed for the Millers but everyone was easily cleared by a defender or saved by the 'keeeper. On thirty-four minutes the lively Ben Pringle put in a good cross which found Grabban who's shot from twelve yards out was blocked by Artell and Artell was there again a couple of minutes later when a corner kick by Sam Wood was floated in and Artell managed to clear it. The Millers looked like they'd found an equaliser a few minutes from the end of the half when a Danny Harrison header looked goalbound but Ashley Westwood cleared off the line.
The Millers looked much better coming into the second half and only a good clearance from Artell stopped Alex Revell scoring while at the other end Johnny Mullins did well to clear from a Moore cross. Mark Bradley, Schofield, Pringle and Grabban all saw shots cleared before the Millers finally scored on sixty-three minutes when Pringle put in a high floating cross which defender and goalkeeper let bounce between them which allowed Grabban to nip in score his sixteenth goal of the season. And soon after it could have been two after a Grabban shot was clumsily met by Phillips who could only punch the ball as far as Jason Taylor but he blased well wide when it looked easier to score. Alex Revell twice came close to putting the home side in front from headers and Grabban found himself in space but put his shot just over the bar. The Millers had two good shouts for penalties, the first when Pringle skipped through a crowd of players and was tripped inside the area and then in time added on at the end of the game when a shot from Harrison was clearly handled in the area by Crewe defender but both appeals were turned down.
I think first thing tomorrow, if I was Andy Scott, I'd have Jason Taylor practicing heading the ball into the back of the net from between two and five yards out - the chances he missed today was unbelievable. The second half was better although stringing passes together still seems to be a problem. Definitely points dropped tonight.