Late blitz from Rotherham sees Rams well beaten
Rotherham United scored three goals in the last 15 minutes to see off Derby County on Wednesday night and end the Rams' three-game winning streak.
In a match rearranged following its second postponement due to rain just 24 hours earlier, the two sides struggled for supremacy throughout until defensive lapses cost Derby dear late on.
Michael Smith put a half chance well wide for the hosts in the opening minutes as they started the game well, but chances were then few and far between as neither side was able to gain control.
It was Derby who had a good, albeit difficult, chance to open the scoring 24 minutes in as Graeme Shinnie’s corner was flicked on by Colin Kazim-Richards and Martyn Waghorn, with the ball behind him, could only direct his overhead kick over the top from five yards out.
Rotherham’s high press gave Derby little time on the ball but the Rams gradually edged into the game, particularly through a large number of set pieces conceded by the Millers in their own half.
Rams keeper David Marshall then had to be alert to get down and push a long range strike from Smith wide of the post.
Clark Robertson should then have put the hosts in front just before half-time, his header from a corner high over the top from just a few yards out.
There was still time for Jamie Lindsay to miss another good opening, as Lee Buchanan’s error allowed him a strike on goal but he put the ball just wide of the target.
Derby began the second-half well and Max Bird’s curling shot from just outside the area forced keeper Viktor Johansson into a save low to his right.
But again half chances and defences being on top became the order of the day, the Rams introducing two debutants in Patrick Roberts and Lee Gregory with 18 minutes to go.
And with his first touch, Gregory should have scored as he arrived to meet Nathan Byrne’s fine cross but screwed his header wide of the post.
And the Rams would be made to pay three minutes later as a deep free-kick from the half way line saw Derby play a high line and get caught out by a flick on and Michael Ihiekwe was on hand to turn the ball home from close range.
And the lead was then doubled six minutes later as Matt Crooks got free down the left and his low ball into the box was turned in by Smith from close range.
It would then only get worse for the Rams with three minutes to go, as Millers sub Ryan Giles worked his way into space in the penalty area before firing a fine strike low past Marshall.
And that would round things off nicely for the hosts who took their chances when they came and punished the Rams for poor defending and missing a key chance with the score at 0-0.
Rotherham: Johansson, Wood ©, Wiles (S McDonald 90+2), Robertson, Lindsay (Ladapo 84), Harding, Ihiekwe, Olosunde (Giles 68), Smith (A McDonald 84), Crooks, Barlaser (Wing 68)
Subs not used: Vickers, Cooper, Clarke, Hurst
Derby: Marshall ©, Wisdom, Shinnie (Baningime 87), Joswiak (Roberts 72), Bird, Waghorn (Gregory 72), Byrne, Kazim-Richards (Sibley 87), Clarke, Buchanan, Knight
Subs not used: Roos, Forsyth, Mengi, McDonald, Watson