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Match Reports

Report: Rotherham edge five goal thriller as Town lose first game in eight

Eastham and Bolger goals not enough as Millers score late to claim victory

7 April 2018

It was not to be for Fleetwood Town as promotion chasing Rotherham United edged a five-goal thriller 3-2 on Saturday afternoon.

IGoals from defenders Ashley Eastham and Cian Bolger were not enough to rescue a draw at the New York Stadium, in a game which could have gone either way.

A Nathan Pond own goal saw the sides level at the break, with second half strikes from Joe Newell and Richard Wood sealing all three points for Paul Warne’s side.

Town’s head coach John Sheridan named an unchanged side from Easter Monday’s 2-0 victory over Bristol Rovers.

It was a bright start for Fleetwood with Conor McAleny, who performed well throughout, going close early on. After a quick counter attack, the striker saw his shot deflected wide for a Town corner.

From the resulting corner the traveling Cod Army were rewarded with a goal from Eastham after just five minutes. The defender poked the ball home after seeing his first effort well saved by the Rotherham keeper after Ashley Hunter’s corner.

Town’s lead however was short lived. Newell found space down the left wing as his cross deflected in off of the unfortunate Pond, ending the sides run of five consecutive clean sheets.

Tempers flared later in the half between the two sides as Rotherham couldn’t break through, as Town’s resolute defending proved to be vital. The Millers piled on the pressure, but our rearguard stayed strong as we kept it level going into the interval.

The second half started as fast paced as the first, as home side took the lead for the first time in the match.

The Millers corner couldn’t be cleared by the Cod defence as Newell’s strike from the edge of the box managed to find a way past Cairns, after travelling through a lot of bodies.

Town were not put down by the early goal and found an almost instant response. Hunter’s superb free kick found Bolger at the back post to head home to once again level the match.

For the majority of the second half both sides traded blows with some fast attacking football and some strong defending from both teams.

But it was the home side who managed to get the winner thirteen minutes from time. Newell whipped a free kick in from the right touch line to find Miller’s captain Wood who scrambled Rotherham back in front from close range.

Town went close in the dying moments through substitute Wes Burns, but Rotherham held out for all three points.

Rodak (GK), Vaulks, Ajayi (Emmanuel), Wood ©, Forde (Taylor), Palmer, Ball (Lavery), Towell, Purrington, Newell, Smith

Subs not used: Price (GK), Ihiekwe, Yates, Williams

Fleetwood: Cairns (GK), Coyle, Eastham, Pond ©, Dempsey, McAleny (Hiwula), Bolger, Diagouraga, Madden (Grant), Hunter, Sowerby (Burns)

Subs not used: Neal (GK), Glendon, Jones, Biggins


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