Warm & sunny in Sheffield for this Rotherham game, and after only 10 minutes it's an unselfish pass from Lee Croft, squared across when he could have shot, but hey! he looked up intelligently! to top-scorer Gary Teale he's a wonder, Gary Teale he's a wonder, he used to be shite, now he's alright, walking in a Derby wonderland for a GOOOOOAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLL.
Within 5 minutes, the Rams substituted Luc Varney for Steve Davies. The Rams' commentary team noticed it about 5 minutes later, partly because it was quietly done, partly because of their position. Opening Rams: 01 Bywater 02 Connolly 05 Addison 17 Buxton 21 Moxey
07 Croft 08 Savage 11 Teale 16 Pearson 18 Pringle 20 Davies (Varney 15)
13 Deeney, 03 McEveley, 06 Leacock, 14 Sean Barker, 22 Mendy, 15 Varney
Rotherham are lively, not yet likely to be lethal. 3 shots off target, while we've just had one on. 01 Warrington 03 Green 05 Sharps 06 Fenton 25 Mills 02 Tonge 08 Taylor 10 Law 15 Ellison
16 Warne 09 Pope Substitutes
30 Annerson, 12 Joseph, 14 Lynch, 04 Harrison, 07 Cummins, 29 Liddell, 20 Taylor
We've just earned our 2nd corner, they've had their first, now they have their 2nd. A quiet game, a long hanging ball beyond everyone. Footy in high summer. A few minutes to half-time. Wait a minute, tho' this is Derby, Paul Connolly's been booked, and a high ball is missed by us, and they score 1-1. Chants break out "Who are you? Who are you?" & (tune: Tom Hark) "Championship, you're having a laugh Championship, you're having a laugh". Paul Warne scored, Bywater maybe got a hand to it, but once Ellison had put him through, it was easy.
We're not imposing ourselves like, for example Reading, 4-0 over Burton. Still, the Gills are 2-0 up over Plymouth, so it could be worse, and it could get worse. I was hoping we would at least test ourselves against a Premier side, say someone around the level of Blackburn in the 2nd round. Get 'em sorted out, Nigel. A change? Or is it our superior stamina that'll do it?
2nd half, and Robbie Savage penalised for a sliding tackle on the ball, 30 yards out, off the wall for their 3rd corner, which leads to a catch from Stephen Bywater. Pringle up the other end for an offside non-goal. Rotherham play it wide, and then in without being picked up, finally offside fortunately. H'mmm, it's 50:50, I guess we've practised our penalties?
No problem. 65 minutes, and Ellison scores, no offside called as we hesitated. "Who are you who are you?" 2-1 Rotherham. Croft, Pringle Teale, good passing, no final ball.
Ellison's off, rested for the next game, now that this one's won, Liddell's on. Of the 4,345 here 1,550 are Rams' fans. We have a good cross from Croft, but no-one to finish. We're building up the pressure, more steam from mid-field. Teale dummies beautifully, Pringle in for the tap-in, but Rotherham can defend. 10 minutes left. Jay McEveley on for Pringle. Sat'dy's opponents, Scunthorpe are 2-1 up over Chesterfield at home. A long ball from Bywater, headed back, Buxton scores... no, a brilliant save by Warrington. 5 minutes left. We're pushing, but time is the water that builds the steam for the pressure, and it's running dry. Two minutes. A long ball from Bywater again, Moxey, Croft, ball flashes past the goal. Jay McEveley in with a chance, shoots against Warrington's legs. A throw into the middle, keeper's, whistle blows. C U later..
From Stan: For all of Sam's bluster, now is as good a time as any to play ManCity, before all those stars forge a team chemistry.
Maybe all those fat wallets will slow the Citizens down a bit, eh?
As for Derby County, I noticed ManCity correspondent Wallace Poulter opined that an early departure in the Carling Cup would actually be good for Championship squads so they withstand the rigors of the long season better and enhance their promotion/playoff pushes.
Of course! A cunning plan! I noticed they all switched off after scoring, and wondered why..