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Greenock Morton 0 v 1 Rotherham - Report

12 July 2014

Full-time from the first pre-season fixture...

Rotherham United's pre-season got off to a winning start after a Kieran Agard header earned a 1-0 victory over Greenock Morton at Cappielow Park.

Boss Steve Evans gave first viewing to new signings Frazer Richardson, Richard Wood, Conor Newton and Ryan Hall, whilst Michael Tidser also started against his former club.

After a static opening five minutes the Millers produced a sweeping move down the left when Alex Revell cushioned the ball into the path of the onrushing Lee Frecklington, but his low cross just evaded Conor Newton at the back post.

On 11 minutes Newton again showed good awareness when Revell nodded into his direction from a Joe Skarz long ball, this time Morton 'keeper Derek Gaston sprinted to the edge of his area to grab the ball just in front of the former St. Mirren midfielder.

After winning a corner from the near side, Hall crossed beautifully to the back post to find Arnason but the Iceland International planted his header over the bar. A minute later and Skarz's deep cross to the far post was headed goalwards by Revell, but his header into the turf clipped the outside of the post and fell harmlessly wide.

Hall started to become a focal point of the Millers play. Firstly his stinging drive from 25 yards was deflected wide and then on 27 minutes a pinpoint centre from Richardson was diverted towards goal by the former Leeds man, but Gaston held on at full stretch.

Gaston was helpless two minutes later though when the Millers took the lead. Skarz crossed from the left finding the head of Agard, who expertly steered his header beyond the Morton 'keeper and into the corner.

Agard was involved again soon after. This time the cross from the right from Frecklington picked out last season's top scorer, but on this occasion his header was held by Gaston.

The Millers were now in full control of proceedings as Morton barely threatened to get close to Adam Collin's goal. Before half-time Revell was fed by Hall but his weak shot from 20 yards was easily held.

Half time
Greenock Morton 0 v 1 Rotherham United

Evans re-shuffled his pack at half-time with eight changes. That meant second-half appearances for new signings Jordan Bowery, Febian Brandy, Paul Green and Mat Sadler.

The second-half continued in the same vein as the first with the Millers having the lion share of possession. After a sedate period in the game the Millers produced a quality move again involving Revell and finishing with a Richard Brindley cross which was tucked just wide by Brandy. 

On 70 minutes Revell was found with a cross-field pass but after driving into the penalty area he dragged his shot wide. The Millers were close again two minutes later when a delightful cross by Green found the head of Wood but his header was held by Gaston.

Inside the last 10 minutes and the Millers almost increased their lead. Pringle fired a lovely pass out wide to Brandy on the right wing who then crossed to find Bowery at the far post, but he directed his header over the bar.

Before the end Pringle threatened with a 25 yard free-kick which shaved the outside of the post.

Full-time
Greenock Morton 0 v 1 Rotherham United

Morton: Gaston (Trialist 82); Kilday (Knight 87), Miller (Hands 84), Crighton, Trialist, McKee (Trialist 74), McCluskey (Russell 84), Milojevic, Trialist (O'Ware 57), Barrowman (Trialist 66), Bachirou (Trilist 83).

Subs not used: Ferris, Caraux.

Rotherham United: Collin (Loach HT); Richardson (Brindley HT), Arnason, Wood, Skarz (Sadler HT), Hall (Pringle HT), Frecklington (Milsom HT), Tidser (Green HT), Newton (Brandy HT), Revell, Agard (Bowery HT).

Referee: Alan Newlands

Attendance: 598

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