5 things from Rotherham’s 3-1 defeat at AFC Wimbledon

Rotherham’s three-game winning run ended as they were undone by defensive errors in a 3-1 defeat at AFC Wimbledon.

Joe Newell had brought the Millers level but they were beaten by Lyle Taylor’s hat-trick, which came courtesy of some howlers at the back.

Here’s five things we learned from the game.

 

Defensive vulnerability is still there

After three clean sheets in a row, it seemed as if Rotherham’s vulnerability at the back was a thing of the past but they put in a defensive horror show at the Kingsmeadow Stadium. The defending for the two late goals did not make pleasurable viewing, as Richard Wood and Joe Mattock collided in the build-up to Taylor’s second and then Wood completely missed his kick for the third. The first wasn’t brilliant either and the errors hurt the Millers again.

Lyle Taylor is a danger at this level

Steve Evans tried to sign Lyle Taylor from Falkirk in 2o13, but the striker chose to join Sheffield United instead and he gave the Millers an insight into what they missed out on. Despite not scoring in 21 games prior to this he gave Michael Ihiekwe and Richard Wood a hellish night, with his pace and movement causing constant trouble. Despite that drought he took all three goals really well and looks to be a handful at this level.

 

Going behind kills the Millers

The Millers did break new ground by wiping out an opposition lead for the first time this season, but they were unable to make it count. Rotherham have now lost every game they have conceded first in and that is not the hallmark of a successful side. Here, when Newell levelled things up with 20 minutes to go, three points were there for the taking, and one should have been the absolute minimum, but the Dons finished the stronger and ended up winning comfortably.

Joe Newell is becoming a super sub

Paul Warne joked that the only thing sure about Saturday is that Joe Newell will start. On this evidence he deserves to as he completely changed the game when he came on, offering life to Rotherham with his incisive runs and bringing them level with a brilliant goal. The way he struck the ball on the volley from so far out shows his quality and he often has an impact from the bench. Now the challenge for the midfielder is to deliver from the start – something he has not always done this season.

Mick McCarthy might not have been convinced

Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy was in attendance in south London, keeping tabs on Kieffer Moore. Although the striker was a constant aerial threat, this was not one of his most marauding displays. If McCarthy had come looking for clarification that his striker could cut it at Championship level he might have been disappointed as there were several moments where a player suited to that level would have done better, particularly in the second half when he was played through. That, though, is a hopeful prospect for the Millers.

 

From the notebook

– Ryan Williams was a pre-match doubt and perhaps he was not fully fit as he was this was his most ineffective performance yet. He was too easily dispossessed and did not threaten in the way he has over a brilliant first couple of months.

– This was another damning indictment for Jonson Clarke-Harris. With the Millers chasing the game at the death boss Warne chose to put Jerry Yates and Semi Ajayi on in front of him.

– A nice moment for youngster Ben Wiles, who was named on the bench for the first time in the league. There’s big hopes for him.

– Rotherham hate the idea of a draw this season. P13 W8 L5. Bristol Rovers are the only other side in League One not to have drawn.

 

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