It was Rotherham who capitalised on their chances in the first half to grab a 3-0 win at the New York Stadium last night.
Both teams came into this game with the opportunity to alleviate their poor starts to the season. Wednesday had lost their last two games going into last night, whilst Rotherham only had 1 win this campaign.
With the importance of the fixture for both teams, a drone spotted by the officials resulting in the game being halted would not have been welcomed by either dressing room. Referee Jared Gillet spotted the aerial device in the fifth minute, heading over to the fourth official and deciding it was a potential safety risk. Both teams entered the changing rooms before heading back to the pitch five minutes later.
It wasn’t long after the restart until Jamie Lindsay looped a header over Wednesday keeper Cameron Dawson to take Rotherham into the lead. The Millers struck in the fifth minute, setting the tone for the rest of the match.
Following Lindsay’s goal, Jack Marriot should have converted for Wednesday straight after kick-off. He fired high and wide after being in a fantastic position to equalize. Wednesday had little after that until the final whistle, so fans will be wondering what could’ve been if Marriot found the back of the net.
Rotherham put pressure on the visitors from the outset, and it was end-to-end football at the beginning of the first half. Wednesday attempted to work down the right-hand side with Moses Odubajo but nothing came of their early attacks.
The Owls’ Aden Flint was forced to come off in the 17th minute due to injury. It comes as another blow to the Wednesday defence as centre-back Dominic Iorfa is still unable to return to the side.
This South Yorkshire derby was a poster-boy for the long-ball play that features regularly in our second division. Possession switched between the two teams rapidly and Wednesday couldn’t seem to produce any passing football.
Centre-back Tom Lees was sent off in the 39th min for bringing down Millers striker Freddie Ladapo in the penalty box. Rotherham midfielder Daniel Barlaser stepped up and converted the penalty, crashing the ball into the top net making it 2-0.
It looked as though Wednesday couldn’t wait for the half-time whistle to blow, but Rotherham kept up their energetic pressure. Lindsay got his second of the game and Rotherham’s third after Dawson parried a shot from outside of the box from Barlaser. It was a lazy end to the first half by the Wednesday defence, and the game was out of reach.
Into the second half and Rotherham were able to relax. Despite Barry Bannan’s solo attempts to press and win the ball back for Wednesday, the lack of reciprocation from his teammates meant Rotherham were cruising.
Jamal Blackman had a great game for the millers, commanding his box and making no mistakes. Barlaser and Lindsay in midfield for Rotherham continued to impress into the second half, linking up well to carry on causing issues for Wednesday’s backline.
Pumping the ball in the air isn’t going to work against this physical Rotherham side. Perhaps top championship sides will be able to pass it around the Millers to get three points, but Wednesday’s lack of creativity in midfield meant they got nowhere.
In the 77th Minute, left-back Joe Mattock should’ve got Rotherham’s fourth goal from inside the six-yard box, but Dawson did enough this time to parry the ball over the crossbar.
In the end, no miraculous comeback was ever in the picture for Garry Monk’s Wednesday, who have now suffered three defeats in a row. Paul Warne’s Rotherham on the other hand will be pleased with a clean sheet and a convincing home win.
Rotherham: Blackman, Mattock, Wood, Ihiekwe, Harding, Wiles, Barlaser (Smith 65’), Lindsay, Miller (MacDonald 82’), Ladapo (Hirst 72’), Josefzoon.
Unused subs: Jones, Sadlier, Crooks, Johansson
Sheffield Wednesday: Dawson, Flint (Palmer 17’), Lees, Börner, Odubajo, Dele-Bashiru, Pelupussy, Bannan, Harris, Marriot (Reach 71’) Paterson (Windass 57’)
Unused subs: Hunt, Kachuga, Rhodes, Wildsmith
Sheffield Wednesday: Lees (39’)
Rotherham: Blackman (26’), Miller (71’), Hirst (75’)
Sheffield Wednesday: Palmer (19’), Odubajo (73’)
Rotherham: Lindsay (5’, 45’), Barlarser (40’)
Sheffield Wednesday: None
Full time: 3-0