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Match Reports

Shrewsbury Town 1 Rotherham United 2

26 December 2019

Late, late injury time winner gives Rotherham the points

Town: Max O'Leary, Aaron Pierre, Scott Golbourne, Dave Edwards (c) (Ryan Giles 78, Omar Beckles, Shaun Whalley, Fejiri Okenabirhie (Daniel Udoh 67), Brad Walker, Donald Love (Ro-Shaun Williams 86), Ethan Ebanks-Landell, Josh Laurent

Subs: Joe Murphy, Ousmane Fane, Sean Goss, Jason Cummings

Rotherham United: Daniel Iversen, Joe Mattock (Richard Wood 90), Adam Thompson, Freddie Ladapo, Dan Barlaser, Carlton Morris (Michael Smith 85), Clark Robertson, Matt Crooks, Chiedozie Ogbene (Kyle Vassell 82), Michael Ihiekwe (c), Matt Olosunde

Subs: Lewis Price, Jamie Lindsay, Trevor Clarke, Jake Hastie

Referee – Marc Edwards
Assistant Referees – Andrew Dallison and Ravel Cheosiaua
Fourth Official – Steven Plane

Sam Ricketts sticks with the same side that started in the 1-0 win away to Blackpool on Saturday. Ollie Norburn is missing again, this time with a slight bug he picked up.

It was a frantic opening to the game with both sides looking to get forward quickly and put the pressure on.

Town won a free kick in a good area on 7 minutes after Whalley was fouled by Mattock deep in the Millers half. Whalley took the kick, but it was cleared by the head of a Millers defender, the ball went to wide for Whalley and Ladapo to challenge, it looked like a foul on Whalley, but the ref saw nothing wrong, Ladapo drove forward, but the Town defence did its job.

Rotherham had a good chance moments later, the corner was swung in and dropped to Morris in the 6-yard box, he spun and shot, but it hit the post, O'Leary was then alert to palm the rebound away from danger.

The visitors were still looking bright on the ball and dangerous in possession, there was a worrying moment on 25 minutes when Ladapo and Beckles challenged for the ball in the Town box, Ladapo went down, but ref Edwards saw it was a foul on Omar.

Brad Walker was having another good game in the heart of the Town midfield, the ball came to him just after the half-hour mark, he showed good movement to turn past his marker and give him the space to drive forward, he then saw the run of Golbourne down the left and found him with a lovely pass, Golbourne drove in an early ball, but a Millers foot was there to cut it out.

Rotherham had a good sight of goal on 35-minutes from a free-kick, the ball was swung high into the Town box, and Carlton Morris rose tallest, he put a downward header in on goal, but O'Leary was equal to it and collected the ball.

Town were playing some good football, and another quick ball to the left found Golbourne, he drove forward and then played it into Walker, he did a lovely flick to put Edwards away in the Millers box, he dinked a ball across the face of goal that came to Love at the back post, he smashed a shot in but it was blocked for a corner.

With half-time approaching Town were putting the pressure on the Millers goal with a series of set-pieces, the first after Whalley was fouled, he swung the ball in but it resulted in another free-kick on the other side after Golbourne was fouled. This one came in and caused problems in the box, but it was cleared for another Town corner.

Half-time: 0-0

Rotherham had a good chance in the opening exchanges of the half, the ball was swung into the Town box from a corner, it dropped in the box, and a low shot from Crooks came in, but O'Leary was down quickly to save.

The visitors had started the half with a high tempo and created another good opening moments later, the ball was whipped into the back post and Crooks got to it, he hooked it back across the face of goal, but no one was there with the final touch.

The atmosphere racked up a few notches after a couple of decisions from the ref, first a shout from Ladapo for a penalty which was waved away, and then a foul against Whalley that looked a little soft. Rotherham were trying to put the pressure on, but Town countered with Whalley, he nicked the ball past Ogbene and was away on goal, Okenabirhie was free in space on the other side, but Whalley's attempted ball was cruelly cut out at the last minute.

It was the visitors who took the lead on 59 minutes after putting the pressure on the Town goal. They had a string of corners, and then the ball was headed back across goal to find Mattock at the back post, and his header had just enough power to beat O'Leary.

Town were looking to get on level terms as soon as possible, and a lovely ball into the Millers box saw Edwards burst in, he looked to turn it home, but a Millers foot got in first to deny Edo.

Town were on level terms on 66-minutes, from a free-kick, after Walker had been stopped in his tracks by Thompson. Whalley floated the ball into the box, the attempted clearance found Golbourne on the left, he clipped the ball to the back post, and there was Pierre to loop a header in at the back post to make it 1-1.

Sam Ricketts made his first change on 67-minutes bringing on Dan Udoh to replace Fejiri Okenabirhie.

Town's picked up a booking for Love on 72-minutes, he challenged for the ball with Ogbene who went to ground, Love took exception to this and reacted angrily, and was booked for his troubles.

Udoh's fresh legs and a this was starting to stretch the visitors on the counter, the ball was cleared following a Millers attach, Udoh showed good strength to hold off his marker, he then held the ball up before playing a lovely ball to put Laurent into the box, he held it up and then played to Love, he whipped a cross in to find Edwards but his header was wide, but it didn't matter as the flag was raised.

Town were dangerous on the counter-attack, and when a Miller's attack was repelled the ball found Udoh bursting over the halfway line, he drove forward and played a lovely ball into the run of Giles, he powered into the box and fired a shot towards the back post, but Iverson was equal to it with a good save.

From the resulting corner, Town had another excellent chance, Rotherham failed to clear, and the ball dropped to Beckles at the back post, he smashed in a shot from a tight angle but got under the ball and fired his shot over.

In the closing parts of the game, Town made their two final substitutions, first bringing on Ryan Giles to replace Dave Edwards, and then Ro-Shaun Williams to replace Donald Love.

Both teams were still looking to win the game and the closing minutes saw chances for both as they went for the winner. Town were getting into good positions down the wings but couldn't get the final important touch.

But it was late drama with the Miller's grabbing a late, late winner in added time, it came from another corner, Town failed to clear, and there was Michael Smith to head the ball home and break the Salopian hearts.

Full-time: 1-2


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