Agard joins Millers elite

When Kieran Agard slid in his third goal at Molineux on Good Friday not only did he add further drama to an already enthralling afternoon by making it 4-4, but he also joined an elite duo of players in Rotherham’s recent history.

Although his conversion of James Tavernier’s cross-shot ultimately counted for nothing against Wolves as the Millers went on to lose 6-4, it was his 20th league strike of the season, a feat only reached by Mark Robins and Adam Le Fondre (twice) in the last 20 years.

Given the quality of strikers that have pulled on the red and white shirt over the last two decades, such as Leo Fortune-West, Alan Lee, Darren Byfield, Martin Butler, Will Hoskins, Reuben Reid, Lewis Grabban and Daniel Nardiello, and the amount of money some of them have gone on to earn the club from their sales, that is an incredible achievement, especially considering the majority of those goals have come from him playing in a wide position.

It has been a career-defining season for Agard who failed to make a huge impact in League Two last year until a run of vital goals towards the end of the campaign sent the Millers on their way to promotion.

And that momentum helped him hit the ground running this season, notching in his first goal on his third start in the win at Crawleyand since then he has never gone more than four games in a row without scoring.

Although playing on the right, most of his goals have actually come from central areas in the penalty box, showing he has the highly sought-after predatory instinct and when he has played in a central role his pace and movement has caused plenty of danger – none more so than with his two-goal performance in the recent 3-0 demolition of runners-up Brentford.

He has also proved a reliable penalty taker, sending in five efforts from the spot, with the miss at Port Vale his only misdemeanour from 12 yards.

He joins esteemed company in 20-goal players of recent times and could emulate Robins’ heroics in firing the Millers to promotion to the second tier after the former Manchester United striker scored 24 in the famous 2000/01 campaign.

Robins was the ultimate fox in the box for the Millers and scored a number of vital goals for the club, also proving he could hack it at a higher level top scoring in the first year in Division One.

Much-loved Le Fondre bagged 25 times in 2009/10 following his move from Rochdaleand then notched 23 the season after, including a hat-trick in a 6-4 win (!), both years in League Two.

Agard may not have the X-factor of Le Fondre or the cleverness of Robins, but with his versatility and work rate he arguably he contributes far more to the team and aged only 24, he is playing his way into the affection of the Millers faithful with the promise of plenty more to come.

And with Steve Evans desperate to splash some cash on a striker or two, maybe Agard is more than stating a case for the theory that the boss already has a viable option.



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