21 August 2012 7.45pm
Attendance: 4,171 (624 Millers)
Rotherham United lost their first away league game of the season to a late goal last night at Sixfields.
The Millers could have gone ahead in the eighth minute when Daniel Nardiello had a shot from eighteen yards out that beat Lee Nichols in Northampton`s goal but also beat the post. The next shot of any significance was the first shot from the home side when a short throw-in found Chris Hackett who skipped past the Millers defence and Millers` 'keeper could only stand and watch the ball whizz past him into the back of the net. And a few minutes later it could have been worse when Ben Harding made the most of a mistake by the Millers midfield and shot at goal only to see the ball hit the underside of the bar and bounce to safety. This woke the visitors up and a Michael O`Connor shot was headed just over from former Miller Dave Artell with Ian Sharps and O`Connor again heading just wide. The Millers skipper, Sharps, was busy at the other end as well when he did well to block from Luke Guttridge while a Nardiello shot beat Nichols but was headed away by Kelvin Langmead. Three minutes before half-time saw the Millers equalise when a shot from Ben Pringle from the edge of the box flew into the back of the net.
The Millers came out much the better side in the second half and should have had a penalty early on when Mark Bradley crossed a ball into the penalty area for Pringle whose shot was clearly handled but referee Mr Kettle waved the appeals away. At the other end Northampton looked to have gone back into the lead but the linesman flagged for a foul on Scott Shearer. Kieran Agard, on for Nardiello, had an opportunity to put the Millers in front when he raced onto a flick on from the busy Kayode Odejayi but he was guilty of going for glory and blazed over from six yards. The Millers had a let-off on seventy minutes when Clive Platt looked clear on goal but decided to head it to Adebayo Akinfenwa, on for Guttridge, who wasn`t really expecting to get it and fluffed the shot. At the other end Nichols did well to scramble a shot away from Agard and then got a fingertip to a Pringle shot and put it over for a corner. Before the corner could be taken Alex Revell, on for Odejayi, had blood on his shirt (whose blood no-one seems to know) and had to leave the pitch to change, and while the Millers were down to ten men the Cobblers made a quick break which resulted in Nicholls coolly putting the ball past the on-rushing Shearer into the back of an empty net for the winner. The Millers tried to get an equaliser in the final five minutes and in time added on a shot from Jason Taylor was put round the post by, for me, Northampton`s man of the match, goalie Nicholls.
A wake up call? Well we had chances to win this game and have to really take those when they come. Personally, I'd have had Lionel Ainsworth on from the start of the second half to run at them because when we were playing on the floor we were much the better side.