Rotherham United 0 Rochdale 1
Rotherham United find themselves, hopefully, temporarily outside the top six in league one this evening after a one-nil home loss to Rochdale.
It was a slow game with the hosts scrambling a Rochdale free-kick to safety after five minutes which was followed, at the other end, by a cross in from Joe Mattock finding Matt Crooks who saw his header smack the upright and rebound to Ben Wiles whose shot was saved by Robert Sanchez in the visitors goal. The first yellow of the game on fifteen minutes was to Callum Camps after Chieo Ogbene got the better of him and was brought down by the Rochdale midfielder. A Mattock short corner found Ogbene who sent the ball in towards Michael Ihiekwe but a blue shirted player got there first. Camps pounced onto a Wiles pass but Clark Robertson was there to clean things up before Mattock put the ball into the net as the flag was raised for offside. Ogbene was dragged down with the Mattock free-kick easy for Sanchez before Carlton Morris saw a shot blocked. A quick throw from former Rotherham loanee Ian Henderson found Rekeil Pyke who returned the favour but Henderson’s shot was blocked by Matthew Olosunde. Ogbene got the ball and flew past a number of Rochdale players but his shot was easy for Sanchez to claim before the same player got a good cross in to find the head of Morris but the forward couldn’t keep his header down. With three minutes to go to the break Luke Matheson sent a lovely ball to Camps who sent the ball to Aaron Morley whose thundered the ball into the top left hand corner of the net to give the visitors the lead going into half-time.
The Millers took Jamie Lindsay off and put Michael Smith on for the start of the second half with the substitute getting a good ball from Matthew Olosunde but headed into the arms of Robert Sanchez. Joe Mattock got the better of Jimmy Ryan getting a corner which Ben Wiles took only to see the ball headed to safety. With an hour of the game gone the hosts came close when Chieo Ogbene set Matt Crooks up in the box but the midfielder put his shot just wide which was followed by Jake Hastie coming on for Carlton Morris. And the Millers’ second sub nearly made an impact when a good cross found Crooks who flicked on to Ogbene but Sanchez did well to smother the header. And it was Hastie again who skipped past his marker and tried his luck only for Sanchez to get his body behind the shot. The first Rochdale change saw Jimmy Ryan replaced by Matthew Gillam, who had scored early this week in their four-two win in the Central League Cup over Rotherham Reserves. Gillam was soon in the action and after Ogbene had got in front of him he appeared to bring the Millers man down but referee Sarginson said ‘no’. Kyle Vassell was brought on for Matthew Olosunde. Daniel Iversen, in the Millers goal, was at full stretch a minute later when a Matt Done shot flew just past the post before one of Rotherham’s best chances came after Vassell’s curling free-kick which was headed on by Dale’s Eoghan O’Connell and went just over his own crossbar with the resulting corner coming to nothing. Crooks saw yellow for a mistimed challenge on Kwadwo Baah who was on for Rekeil Pyke with Camps free-kick being being turned over by Iversen’s fingertips with the resulting corner being cleared by the Millers defence. A push on Ogbene saw Baah booked with Ogbene getting the same punishment for a bit of argy-bargy afterwards. In the four minutes of time added on Ian Henderson was subbed with the visitors sending on Fabio Tavares with the last action of the game seeing Crooks finding Mattock but the defender, just back from injury, heading wide.
The Millers never got a foothold in this afternoons game at the New York Stadium. Yes, there were a few chances and yes, their ‘keeper was their best player but, in truth, our shots/headers towards him never really caused a threat.
Another home loss and I fear the natives are getting restless.
Crowd – 8,313 (262 from Rochdale)
Referee – C Sarginson