Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Match Reports

Late goal hurts Evans

8 April 2014

Gaffer disappointed with penalty defeat...

Rotherham United Manager Steve Evans saw his side’s unbeaten streak come to a disappointing end at Bramall Lane as a 90th minute Ben Davies penalty saw Sheffield United edge this South Yorkshire derby.

Harry Maguire was judged to have been fouled in the final minute of normal time, a decision that hurt the Millers boss.

“I didn’t know on the sideline but Mike Dean gives it and I expected he’d got it right, but like everyone else we have an analyst and we’ve looked at the key incidents and we were disappointed. I’m taking nothing away from Sheffield United as a football club that we think highly of but it’s not a penalty.”

The Millers had two penalty shouts of their own in the second period, and Evans felt both could have gone the way of his side, although conceded some sympathy to the match official. 

“We looked at the other two incidents and we felt they were both penalties as the boy’s gone across Hitchcock and clipped his heels and the handball is hard to see and the referee can sometimes have a particular angle that you can’t give it.”

It was a slow burner of a game with a single goal always likely to be the difference, but Evans explained that even a draw wasn’t enough when the news came through from elsewhere that second-placed Brentford were ahead.

“We didn’t play in the first 25 minutes, we weren’t really at it and we ground our way into the game in the second half and were a lot better as we changed our shape a little bit. We had a real go, we knew Brentford were in front so we went with four up top and always thought we could get an opening.”

Lee Frecklington missed out on a starting place after picking up a knock at the weekend and Evans says the midfielder wasn’t going to be risked at a crucial stage of the season. 

“He was close but we were never going to gamble with Frecks. He’s just got a muscle at top of his glute which he’s feeling but we weren’t going to risk him. Maybe if it was the last game of the season or a play off final we might have considered putting him in but not with some important games coming up. Arnie’s just feeling his back a little bit as well, but he should be fine.”

Advertisement block