Rotherham United made a blistering start to 2011 after a five star performance to sink fellow promotion-chasers Port Vale at Don Valley.
Ryan Taylor grabbed a brace whilst loan signings Will Atkinson and Mark Randall scored their first ever Millers goals, but it was Nicky Law who started the scoring with his second of the campaign inside 10 minutes.
The Millers made one change for the first game of the new year, with Danny Coid replacing injured skipper Ryan Cresswell. Nick Fenton led out the side in the absence of Cresswell.
The Millers thought they had taken the lead inside three minutes, but the referee mysteriously disallowed Johnny Mullins' strike to the consternation of the Millers players. A high ball into the box wasn't cleared properly, allowing Mullins to strike on the volley from 16 yards. His effort took a deflection and sailed into the corner of Stuart Tomlinson's goal, but the referee seemed to be signalling for a foul as Mullins pulled the trigger.
Rotherham did take the lead after the flowing move on 10 minutes. Ryan Taylor rose high to flick down to Atkinson, who spotted Law's run and fed the ball into his path, allowing Law to strike first time past Tomlinson at his near post.
The home side looked full of confidence and took total control of the game after their opener. Marcus Marshall again looked dangerous on the left wing, and his left-footed shot after cutting side forced a decent save from Tomlinson.
The lead was deservedly doubled inside 20 minutes after another excellent move. The Millers attacked down the left, failed to create an opening but retained possession. The ball was worked out to Coid on the right, whose excellent cross was headed home by Ryan Taylor.
Vale struggled to create any meaningful chances, with the closest they came to scoring in the opening half hour a deflected Justin Richards cross.
Things went from bad to worse a minute later for the visitors, after they were reduced to 10 men. Tomlinson had been having a torrid time in the Vale goal, and was shown red for a professional foul on Marshall.
Lee Collins almost capitalised on an injury to Coid, breaking down Vale's left as Coid was receiving treatment. Collins' cross was inviting, but Marc Richards fired over.
Rotherham United 2 v 0 Port Vale
Rotherham lost Coid to injury at the start of the second half but it didn't affect their concentration with the Millers scoring a third a minute after the restart. Good work by Law down the right ended with a low cross into the area where Atkinson swept home his first ever goal for the Millers.
On 50 minutes great link up play by Ryan Taylor and Le Fondre resulted in a strike from just inside the area by the league's top scorer, but sub 'keeper Chris Martin made a smart one handed save to tip the ball over.
The Millers continued to dominate and made it 4-0 in spectacular style. Tom Newey crossed from the left but the Vale defence could only partially clear the ball to Ryan Taylor who hooked the ball into the top corner in stunning fashion to leave Martin with no chance.
A minute later a cross from the right from Marshall found Fenton but when well placed he could only guide his header into the arms of Martin.
Loan signing Randall made his return from injury when he replaced Law on 64 minutes. This was his first appearance since the defeat at Southend. He wasted no time in showing his undoubted quality when with eight minutes remaining he lashed the ball home from 25 yards with a thunderbolt strike that went in off the crossbar.
Rotherham United 5 v 0 Port Vale
Rotherham United: Warrington; Coid (Ashworth ht), Mullins, Fenton, Newey, Marshall, Law (Randall 64), J. Taylor, Atkinson, R. Taylor, Le Fondre (Pope 73).
Subs not used: Harrison, Ellison, Warne, Annerson.
Port Vale: Tomlinson; Yates, McCombe (K.Taylor 54), Owen, Collins, Loft (Rigg 81), Griffith, Roberts, Dodds, M. Richards, J. Richards (Martin 34).
Subs not used: R. Taylor, Fraser, Haldane, Sutton.
Attendance: 3,994 (496).