<b>Shrewsbury Town 1 Rotherham United 2</b> aet
Rodman (58), Wood (32, 102)
Crowd – 26,218
Rotherham United’s skipper Richard Wood certainly wore his magic hat yesterday at Wembley with his two goals taking the Millers back into the Championship against Shrewsbury Town.
It could have been the perfect start for Rotherham on eight minutes after Joe Newell won a corner which he floated in Omar Beckles tumbled Wood to the floor in the area with referee Rob Jones immediately pointing to the spot. David Ball stepped up but Shrews ‘keeper Dean Henderson went the right way palming the ball away from goal for his defence to clear. Josh Emmanuel sent Jon Taylor off down the wing but his cross went out of play and minutes later Newell and Taylor combined well with the winger seeing his shot defended well. A solo run from Ball around the quarter of an hour mark saw his shot scrambled away for a corner which nearly fell to Michael Smith with a second corner finding the head of Wood but when he shouts for a second penalty the referee shakes his head. At the other end Shaun Whalley did well and his cross caught the Millers off guard as he looks for the head of Alex Rodman but it went out to safety. The first yellow of the afternoon rightly went to Whalley for an awful challenge on Joe Mattock. The Shrews got more into the game and only some good thinking from Richie Towell stopped Bryn Morris opening the scoring followed by Jon Nolan finding the head of former Millers loanee Carlton Morris but the ball went just wide. On thirty-two minutes the Millers won another corner which Newell took finding the head of Wood who put the ball into the net to send the travelling Yorkshire fans into raptures. A nasty challenge by James Bolton on Newell saw the Shrews defender get a deserved yellow. The resulting Newell free-kick was floated into the area towards Smith with it finally going out for a throw which Will Vaulks launches into the box with the Millers getting another corner. In the final minute of the half some nice work from Emmanuel saw him get the ball to Towell whose dipping shot went just over the crossbar.
Shrewsbury started the second half well and some lovely work from Carlton Morris saw him get the better of Joe Mattock with his cross-cum-shot going across goal. The first substitution of the afternoon saw Stefan Payne replace Bryn Morris. After Semi Ajayi felled former Miller Mat Sadler a good set-piece saw Shaun Whalley get the ball to Sadler who sent the ball to Alex Rodman who then put the ball past Millers’ ‘keeper Marek Rodak to make it one-one. Minutes later only a good challenge from Richard Wood stopped Carlton Morris in his tracks who eventually had to be replaced by Lenell John-Lewis. Will Vaulks had a shot at goal which Dean Henderson could only claw at but referee Jones deemed that Michael Smith had committed a foul while trying to get to the ball. The Millers first substitution saw David Ball replaced by Caolan Lavery followed by Shrewsbury taking off James Bolton for Joe Riley. Vaulks sent a ball to Lavery in the box but he put his shot just wide before a shot from Vaulks himself was wide which was followed by Ryan Williams coming on for Jon Taylor. With fifteen minutes to go Lavery had a super chance to put the Millers back in front but Dean Henderson managed to palm away before John-Lewis at the other end put a shot wide when he maybe should have done better. Henderson was grateful in the final minutes that Smith couldn’t get his feet right and he was able to grab the ball before he also had to save from the lively Williams. In time added on a Newell corner found Smith at the back post who got it out to Vaulks but he put the ball over followed by the Shrews ‘keeper making a superb save from Williams.
Josh Emmanuel had to be aware to stop Ben Godfrey in his tracks and then is on hand to get the resulting corner away. Shaun Whalley was very lucky not to get a second yellow after a dreadful foul on Ryan Williams and Williams was the recipient of another poor challenge minutes later which saw Mat Sadler booked. Joe Newell’s free-kick found Richard Wood in acres of space and leaving Dean Henderson in two-minds he put the ball into the net and flew down the other end to celebrate with the Millers fans. And the Millers skipper was well placed at the other end to get himself in the way of a shot from Stefan Payne minutes later.
The second-half of time added on saw Anthony Forde replace Joe Newell. Marek Rodak had to punch a Payne free-kick away before he did well to claim a ball that was bouncing all over the box and in the final minute he got down to hold on to a ball and wasn’t letting go easily.
The referee blew the whistle, over fourteen thousand Millers fans and friends roared, sang and chanted.
Rotherham United are back in the Championship.