Second-half comeback inflicts 2-1 defeat at the New York Stadium...
ROTHERHAM 2 (Revell 58, Clarke-Harris 65), UNITED 1 (Antenucci 30).
Rotherham: Collin, Skarz, Arnason, Hall (Taylor 45), Frecklington, Revell, Green, Richardson, Pringle (Smallwood 80), Morgan, Derbyshire (Clarke-Harris 62). Subs. Loach, Broadfoot, Bowery, Swift.
United: Silvestri, Berardi, Pearce, Bellusci, Warnock, Austin, Bianchi (Morison 88), Mowatt, Cook (Adryan 62), Antenucci, Doukara (Sharp 76). Subs. S Taylor, Byram, Cooper, Sloth.
Referee: K Stroud
Booked: Frecklington, Revell, Clarke-Harris (Rotherham), Bianchi, Silvestri, Doukara, Adryan (United)
Att: 11,350 (2,294 United)
Following a two-week international break, United head coach Darko Milanic made two changes from the side that drew 1-1 with Sheffield Wednesday at Elland Road last time out as Lewis Cook and Stephen Warnock returned to the team in place of Casper Sloth and Sam Byram respectively.
Both sides exchanged possession in the early stages but it was Milanic’s men who had the first sights of goal as Rodolph Austin saw his long-range strike deflected behind before Mirco Antenucci turned Alex Mowatt’s low cross wide on the turn.
Ryan Hall, one of three former United players named in the Rotherham line-up, then blasted a 13th-minute free-kick over Marco Silvestri's bar with the hosts' first effort of the game.
Souleymane Doukara dragged a low strike wide at the opposite end after powering through, while Silvestri denied Matt Derbyshire with a smart low stop as proceedings began to open up.
The breakthrough came on the half-hour mark and it was delight for the travelling army as Antenucci evaded the offside trap, latching on Doukara’s pin-point through ball to beat Adam Collin with a cool finish into the bottom corner for his third goal of the season.
It sparked a sharp increase in tempo and Austin fired a speculative strike over the bar before Cook almost danced his way through the Rotherham defence, but the move broke down as red shirts flocked back in numbers.
Silvestri then produced the save of the evening so far as he flew across his line to push away Alex Revell’s goal-bound header with a fine right-handed stop.
Austin continued to drive United forward from midfield, though, and he saw another strike fly wide after a bursting run. Rotherham then managed to clear their lines from an Antenucci cutback as the one-goal advantage was taken into half-time.
Rotherham started the second half on the front foot and substitute Paul Taylor forced Silvestri to beat a powerful free-kick away. Revell then headed another Ben Pringle cross over the bar in a combination which looked their most likely route to goal.
Alex Mowatt fired into the arms of Collin after skipping away from his marker, but the scoreline was levelled after 58 minutes as Revell converted the rebound from inside the area after Lee Frecklington’s effort was pushed into his path.
Rotherham then took the lead just seven minutes later through substitute Jonson Clarke-Harris, firing a powerful 25-yard strike into the bottom corner just moments after stepping off the bench.
Milanic introduced Adryan for his United debut and the Brazilian threatened a quick-fire equaliser as he showed some neat footwork to create an opening on the edge of the box, only to see his low effort tipped behind by Collin.
Silvestri was alert to clutch onto Clarke-Harris’ header but the lively Adryan continued to cause problems as he glided through the Rotherham backline before fizzing a strike inches wide of the post.
United were being urged forward and Antenucci was thwarted by a fine Collin save to tip his low shot onto the post as it squirmed behind for a corner, before Adryan curled over the bar after being teed up by Giuseppe Bellusci’s back-heel.
Things were opening up at the back, though, and Silvestri rushed off his line to deny Revell with a block after he had raced through on goal before Berardi bravely threw himself at the striker’s feet to prevent him adding a third.
Steve Morison was brought on and headed Mowatt's corner wide in the final minute of stoppage time, but the Millers resisted United’s late pressure to secure the three points.