Result: Middlesbrough 2 Rotherham United 0 - Quality second half double strike rocks Millers

Rotherham's Richie Smallwood gets on the ball against his former club Boro. Photo: Paul Wickson
Rotherham's Richie Smallwood gets on the ball against his former club Boro. Photo: Paul Wickson

Rotherham United were undone by two minutes of second-half quality as they slipped to a 2-0 defeat in their Championship clash at Middlesbrough.

They fell behind in the 50th minute when Lee Tomlin took his time at the edge of the penalty area before firing past Emi Martinez and 16 minutes later Tomlin’s cute inside pass was controlled and clinically dispatched by Patrick Bamford.

The Millers had frustrated Boro in the first half and kept going to the end but never threatened to force their way back into the match after going behind against the promotion-chasing home side.

With Millwall losing at home to Watford, it’s as you were at the foot of the table, with 21st-placed Rotherham maintaining their seven-point gap over the Lions and Wigan in the last two relegation places.

Steve Evans’ men and Wigan have four matches left to play and Millwall five.

Adam Hammill shot over from distance for the Millers and he and Kari Arnason had shots blocked, but Kirk Broadfoot was the only visiting player to test Boro goalkeeper Dimi Konstantopoulos, firing straight at him in the 68th minute.

Martinez produced a flying save to palm over a Kike header with a minute of normal time remaining and then two minutes into timed added on kept out Bamford’s penalty, awarded when Richard Wood, picked to start after returning from his Crawley loan spell, brought down Kike.

Middlesbrough (4-2-3-1): Konstantopoulos; Kalas, Ayala (Woodgate 69), Gibson, Friend; Forshaw, Clayton (Whitehead 79); Adomah, Tomlin (Nsue 85), Bamford; Kike. Subs not used: Ripley, Whitehead, Vossen, Nsue, Amorebieta, Wildschut.

Rotherham United (4-4-2): Martinez; Hunt, Broadfoot, Wood, Lafferty; Green (Sammon 76), Smallwood, Arnason (Frecklington,69), Hammil; ; Bowery, Derbyshire (Ward 59). Subs not used: Collin, Pringle, Newton, Milsom.

Referee: Iain Williamson (Berkshire).

Attendance: 19,537 (963).