Good Friday for the Millers
Cherry Red Records Stadium
6 April 2012 3.00pm
Attendance: 4,387 (368 Millers*)
Rotherham United won their first away game since the last time they played on a Friday, this afternoon against Wimbledon at Kingsmeadow with a goal from substitute Sam Hoskins, which keeps the slim hopes of a play-off place alive.
The Millers dominated the first half of the game with the game only five minutes old when a shot from Gareth Evans was saved by Dons 'keeper, Jack Turner. A minute later the Millers first corner of the game was taken by Evans who found the head of Ryan Cresswell but the ball went over the bar. A few minutes later Alex Revell found Ben Pringle with a pass who in turn found Danny Schofield who fed Dale Tonge and the home sides 'keeper had to be alert to hold on to the defenders fierce shot. On fifteen minutes Lewis Grabban turned Gareth Gwillim and put in a good cross for Pringle but the ginger-haired striker blazed over from close range. Revell also saw a header go over the bar and Evans had the chance to put the visitors in the lead after a cross from Schofield but the former Macclesfield player scuffed his shot and it came to nothing. On the half-hour mark the home side suddenly woke up and Ricky Wellard set up a shooting chance for George Moncur who curled the ball in, beating Rhys Taylor in the Millers' goal, but it flew just wide of the far post. Eleven minutes before the break, the Millers finally broke the deadlock when a long ball from Cresswell was headed down by Revell to Grabban who got the ball to Pringle's feet and the twenty-two year old fooled Turner and the ball slowly made it's way over the line to give the visitors a deserved lead. On the stroke of half-time the home side had a good chance to equalise after Rashid Yussuff made room for himself but saw his shot go just over the crossbar.
The home side had a chance in the opening minutes of the second half when Christian Jolley, on for Kieron Djilali, blazed over and shortly afterwards a Luke Moore shot had the same fate. Rhys Taylor did well to punch away a shot from Jolley with Sam Hatton heading over the subsequent corner. Taylor did well again a few minutes later when he reacted superbly and tipped over from a Chris Bush, on for Brett Johnson, header. Eventually, all the hosts pressure paid off and on sixty-five minutes a Jack Midson pass found Moore free of his marker and he volleyed the ball home from an acute angle. Jolley continued to take the fight to the Millers and got a cross in for Rashid Yussuff whose shot was cleared by Johnny Mullins before he just failed to reach a Hatton cross. At the other end, Grabban skipped past Ricky Wellard and beating Taylor with his shot was dismayed to see Moore appear from nowhere to clear off the line and a minute later he was up the other end blazing the ball over the crossbar. The Millers introduced Sam Hoskins ten minutes from the end and the Southampton loanee soon became a hero when, two minutes later, he was allowed to run down the right, darted into the area and, from what looked like an impossible angle, smashed the ball into the top corner of the net for his first senior goal and to give the Millers all three points.
A Good Friday for the Millers with their first ever visit to Kingsmeadow and a well deserved three points - though, they really did make it hard for themselves and should have been going in with a good lead at half-time.
* I'm not sure how they have come up with this figure. We were told the away section held 600. Fans arriving just before 3.00pm were told it was full and were 'locked out'. Something not adding up there