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Kick off 19:45 (UK)

4-3
20 February 2024 Venue Portman Road Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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Match Reports

REPORT | IPSWICH TOWN 4 v 3 ROTHERHAM

20 February 2024

A topsy-turvy tie in Suffolk ended in cruel heart-break for the Millers, who looked to have earned a point at high-flying Ipswich with a stoppage-time equaliser from the spot.

The hosts, however, notched their own late strike to secure all the points despite a second-half of dominance from the visitors.

The Millers showed plenty of heart and composure on the ball against automatic-promotion-chasing Ipswich, with Clucas’ craft and Rinomhota’s industry causing problems for the Tractor Boys throughout.

It was the perfect start for the Millers who took the lead inside 90 seconds after some terrific pressing in the final third. When it looked like Sam Clucas had run into trouble, the midfielder managed to prod the ball into the path of Tom Eaves who tucked home comfortably from 15 yards. It was the number nine’s third goal of the season - all of which have come on the road.

Naturally, the hosts were eager to level swiftly and twice looked to carve out a leveller with Kieffer Moore, once of Rotherham United colours, coming close inside the third and fifth minutes - the latter of which a looping header from Davis’ left-wing free-kick which sailed wide.

The Millers continued to press well with great energy from the front two in Eaves and Hugill. The hosts levelled on nine minutes after the Millers failed to clear their lines, allowing Morsy to stand up a cross from just inside the box and Burns arrived to nod beyond Johansson.

Burns’ goal had got the winger into the mood and he jinked his way into the area from the right before dragging inches wide of Johansson’s right-hand post. His joy down the right soon yielded another goal, as he turned provider to deliver expertly for Kieffer Moore to turn the game on its head inside the 14th minute. The Welsh international had the simple task of sweeping home from eight yards.

Rotherham were undeterred by the setback and were shifting the ball forward quickly, applying the pressure on Ipswich’s backline. After winning a corner, Andy Rinomhota saw the delivery fall his way which he duly sent back towards goal on the volley only for it to be deflected wide.

Despite their reaction, the Millers found themselves two goals behind before the half-hour mark. Wes Burns broke clear down the right as Rotherham waited for a foul that never came, and after seeing his shot well saved by the feet of Johansson, a second attempt at goal fell Kindly for Burns who managed to stretch and scramble home his second of the game.

There was a lengthy break in play just after half-an-hour as Ollie Rathbone was barged over into the advertising hoardings, prompting lengthy treatment for the midfielder from the Millers medical team. Thankfully, the number 18 was back to his feet but had to be replaced by Femi Seriki in what was a concussion substitution.

Burns was brimming with confidence for the Tractor Boys, and came close to his hat-trick on 40 minutes as he ghosted in at the far post to greet a left-wing delivery with his head, but he could only place his header wide.


Second half

After the break, the Millers continued to act positive in closing down and moving the ball well in their search to chip away the two-goal deficit.

It took until the hour-mark but the Millers did halve the deficit thanks to Hakeem Odoffin. Sam Clucas recycled a free-kick, tempting to Hladky to come and attempt to claim his looping second ball but the goalkeeper made a mess of the situation and Odoffin was on hand to fire home from inside the area.

The Millers looked much more confident as they harried their opponents, and saw Hugill almost carve an opportunity after good work down the right. At the other end, Johansson smothered an attempt from Burns after the winger continued his quest for a hat-trick, latching onto the busy Chaplin’s through-ball from the left.


With 80 minutes played, Rotherham continued to apply the pressure as they enjoyed more than their fair share of the ball, and came agonisingly close to a leveller through Kioso. Odoffin swung in a cross from the right that squirmed its way into Kioso’s path, his low drive had Hladky stranded but his effort thumped the base of the post.

Substitute Wyke looked disappointed with himself after volleying wide on 89 minutes, though in fairness to the striker the ball popped up quickly onto his weaker right foot. Moments later, Nombe forced Hladky into a save as Rotherham turned the screw with added time showcased as eight minutes.


In the third minute of added time, the Millers were awarded their first spot-kick of the season as Peter Kioso was felled in the box. Cafu showed an iron nerve to cooly despatch a Panenka penalty down the middle.

Despite their complete dominance in the second half, Millers hearts were broken as they were cruelly denied a well-deserved shared of the spoils. Omari Hutchinson pounced to rifle beyond Johansson in the sixth minute of stoppage time. 

 

Ipswich Town: Hladky, Clarke (Tuanzebe 75), Woolfenden, Burgess, Davis, Morsy, Travis (Luongo 73), Burns (Jackson 88), Chaplin (Hutchinson 72), Sarmiento (Broadhead 46), Moore (Al-Hamadi 80).

Unused: Walton, Humphreys, Harness.

Millers: Johansson, Peltier (Humphreys 72), Morrison, Odoffin, Kioso, Rathbone (Seriki 36), Tiehi, Clucas, Rinomhota (Cafu 86), Eaves (Wyke 86), Hugill (Nombe 72).

Unused: Phillips, Lindsay, Ferguson, Appiah.

Referee: K. Stroud.

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