Millers FT: Plymouth 0 Rotherham United 1

Ben Pringle fires an effort towards goal
Ben Pringle fires an effort towards goal

Never had the Millers taken as many fans to Home Park as they did today.

Those who were here last season saw the side win but that was the first one for 17 visits.

As someone who has made all those 17 visits I can therefore vouch for the difficulties that Rotherham have had in winning here - and a victory was something today’s following craved.

But the Green Army was out in force as well because their side could secure safety from relegation today.

The first scare was at the Rotherham end.

Left-back Bashera went up the left and it was a dangerous ball which travelled across the six-yard area before Skarz rescued matters with a clearing header.

Shearer dealt calmly with a Bryan free-kick which swung in awkwardly.

Then Revell was harshly booked when he accidentally caught Wotton as the defender ducked to make a header. The Millers striker looked incredulous when the yellow card was waved.

Referee Cootes then got another mouthful when he blocked off Frecklington as he moved on to a pass from Arnason and the ball was therefore gifted to Argyle.

After a Mullins break came to nothing, the home side responded and Agard was booked for bringing down Bryan, although that was also a soft booking.

Yet another one followed when Arnason tugged at Hourihane. Play carried on because the Argyle player had the ball but, when play was eventually stopped, the referee booked Arnason who had played for the Pilgrims a couple of years ago.

Understandly, there wasn’t the same intensity to Rotherham’s game as there was the other night at Bradford and they were feeling their way into the game against a home side clearly intent on battling for their League Two safety.

Skarz made a good interception near the edge of the area. Then there was a moment of anxiety when Bryan spotted Gurrieri going forward and slipped his pass through the back four but Shearer just managed to get to the ball before the Plymouth man.

Rotherham were struggling to make an impact going forward and looking a touch laboured - clearly the effects of their big effort on Tuesday.

Arnason spotted potential danger when the ball came to Reid just inside the area.

A dubious foul on Agard gave Rotherham an opportunity 25 yards out. O’Connor had a go from the free-kick but it was straight at Cole.

Branston produced a couple of typically strong headers inside his own area but then, just before the break, Rotherham should have gone in front with a great chance.

Revell’s touch found Pringle and his header into the area was perfect for Frecklington who was all alone as he closed in. However, his effort was deflected for a corner by keeper Cole and, in a game of so few opportunities, one hoped it would’t prove a vital miss.

As the half-time whistle went, the referee Coote, who had hardly endeared himself to anyone, found himself under fire from players of both sides.

Pringle won a corner in the opening minutes of the half. It was half-cleared and it was Pringle who toppled under the challenge and there were some shouts for a penalty.

A long throw followed and Rotherham should have been in front.

Arnason hurled it into the mix, the ball bounced loose and it was a clear chance for Revell six yards out but he put his effort inches wide of the far post.

As the Millers fans behind that goal got behind their team, they saw another chance go begging.

Pringle did well and produced a good centre but Agard put his header wide.

The home side replaced Cowan-Hall with Murray.

Rotherham were much better this half and had begun to put their game together as they went for that precious first goal.

However, Argyle had the next threat.

It was Reid who put a header just wide of the near post.

Rotherham were in trouble again following a run from Bashera. Davis blocked a shot from Gurrieri, the loose ball ran away and Reid blasted his effort over the top from 16 yards.

Then, with 15 minutes to go, Rotherham got the precious goal they so desperately desired and which they had gone for in the second half.

Skarz struck a free-kick beyond the far post. Mullins got in the header and the ball bounced into the six-yard area and AGARD showed superb opportunism to hook his foot round a defender and fire the ball into the net. He raced off in front of the joyous Millers fans behind that goal.

The Millers are guaranteed promotion if they win at home to Aldershot at home next Saturday, a draw should see them up on goal difference and they could even lose and still go up if other results go their way.