Millers Out of Johnstone's Paint Trophy
new York St
4 September 2012 7.30pm
Attendance: 3975 (362 City fans)
Rotherham United`s Johnstone`s Paint Trophy run was over almost before it started as they lost their first competitive game at the New York Stadium this evening to newly promoted York City.
It was a frustrating night for the Millers who didn`t really get out of the blocks in the first half. Gareth Evans had a half-hearted shot at goal on fifteen minutes which went way over and a Michael O`Connor free-kick was easily blocked a few minutes later. On twenty-two minutes the home side were forced into a change with Mark Bradley appearing to have a thigh problem going off and was replaced by David Noble. The Millers were given the chance to take the lead when Michael Ingham was forced into picking up a back-pass from Clarke Carlisle as Kieran Agard ready to pounce but the resulting free-kick, which was well in the area, from Gareth Evans came to nothing. The visitors` first real surge forward came just after the half-hour mark when Jonathan Smith tried a shot but it was easily saved by Andy Warrington in the Millers goal. At the other end an O`Connor cross saw Ingham have to back pedal and he was lucky to get fingertips to the ball and push it over and the resulting corner was cleared by Matty Blair. Just before half-time Alex Revell had a tame shot at goal but it didn`t bother Ingham while he easily saved a shot from Ainsworth.
York came out the better at the start of the second half with Andy Warrington making a comfortable save from Patrick McLaughlin and a few minutes later Ian Sharps was on hand to clear a Lanre Oyebanjo corner. After that the Millers got into their stride but were unable to supply that final finishing touch. An in swinging ball from Evans found Mullins whose header looked to be heading for the corner of the net but Ingham did ever so well to push it away and a few minutes later a Warrington clearance found Revell but his effort was parried away to safety by the Minstermens` 'keeper. On sixty-five minutes Blair pounced on a rare mistake by Noble and got the ball to Michael Coulson but Mullins was alert enough to make a good block. At the other end Ingham was in the middle again when he did well to stretch and save from Evans and minutes later Charlie Taylor blocked a shot from Ainsworth. With ten minutes remaining the deadlock was broken when a Jason Walker shot was blocked by the Millers defence but fell to Blair who slid the ball past the outstretched hand of Warrington and into the back of the net. The Millers fans thought they had equalised straight from the re-start when Evans found Daniel Nardiello, on for Ainsworth, but his point blank header was acrobatically saved by Ingham at the left hand post. Revell looked to have scored when his header left Ingham standing watching but the effort went wide while Evans and Nardiello had shots saved. Despite trying the Millers couldn`t find an equaliser before the referee blew for full time.
We had plenty of efforts on goal in the second half but I think Michael Ingham, in the visitors` goal, had had three Shredded Wheat before coming onto the pitch this evening. But, I really think we lost this game on a lacklustre display in the first half.