Millers hit Stags for eight at Rainworth...
Rotherham United Reserves opened up their Final Third Development Cup campaign with a resounding 8-0 success over Mansfield Town.
Paul Raynor led a strong Rotherham United reserve outfit which was captained by Ryan Hall and featured the likes of Jordan Bowery, Jonson Clarke-Harris and Matt Derbyshire.
The Millers made the first chance at a very wet and windy Rainworth Miners Welfare when Conor Newton squared for Nicky Walker who cleared the bar from 20 yards. Soon after Clarke-Harris fired a free-kick narrowly wide of the near post after he was upended 25 yards from goal. The Millers continued to rain in shots in the opening minutes with Derbyshire next to try his luck with a low shot which landed just wide.
After seven minutes the early the pressure paid off. Bowery picked up possession from a throw from the right; he then cut inside before unleashing an unstoppable shot into the top corner from 18 yards. Four minutes later and the Millers doubled their advantage. After Clarke-Harris’ shot was turned behind by Frazer Hampson, Conor Newton profited by heading in Hall’s corner with a run to the near post.
The game was starting to become one way traffic when the Millers made it 3-0 on 14 minutes. Again a dangerous corner from Hall was nodded in at the near post by Derbyshire, who shook off his marker with a clever run.
Rotherham added a fourth with the next meaningful attack. Richard Wood had stayed up from a set-play which Mansfield hadn’t fully cleared; he played the ball towards Clarke-Harris who let the ball run for Walker who blasted the ball beyond Hampson from 18 yards out.
The Millers looked like they would score everytime Hall put the ball down for a set-play or a corner, and so it proved again on 27 minutes. Hall’s centre was this time powered home by Wood who towered above the Mansfield defence to make it 5-0.
The home side began to dig in at Rainworth Miners Welfare and started to frustrate the Millers. With five minutes to go before the break a Bowery cross was converted by Clarke-Harris, but Mansfield were saved by the offside flag.
Mansfield Town Reserves 0 v 5 Rotherham United Reserves
The home side managed to halt the run of goals at the start of the second half. The closest the Millers came to adding a sixth in the opening 15 minutes was a Newton shot which was blocked on the edge of the area.
Raynor gave first-year scholar Bradley Peace-McDonald the opportunity to impress replacing Reece Lucas for the final 30 minutes.
The Millers eventually broke the stubborn resistance on 68 minutes when Derbyshire slid a pass through to the onrushing Newton, who poked the ball beyond Hampson for his second of the evening.
A flowing move on 70 minutes deserved better when brilliant hold up play by Derbyshire brought Newton into the attack, and his cross into the area found Clarke-Harris who was denied by Hampson.
Seconds later and the Millers were in seventh heaven. Hall played a brilliant through ball in behind the Mansfield defence to find Mitch Rose who slotted the ball past Hampson.
The floodgates were now well and truly open when a minute later the Millers bagged an eighth goal. Derbyshire this time turned provider when he collected the ball at the by-line before cutting the ball back to Walker who fired into an empty net for his second.
Derbyshire almost scored the goal of the night when after a great first touch out of his feet he fired a shot from fully 30 yards just wide.
Youngsters Kuda Muskwe and Fabian Bailey were given a run out for the final 12 minutes replacing Walker and Rose.
Mansfield Town Reserves 0 v 8 Rotherham United Reserves
Mansfield: Hampson; Walker, Tabreham (Hutchinson HT), Fitzpatrick, Wilson, Spencer, Dwyer, J. Thomas, Fletcher (L.Thomas 66), Harrison, Green.
Subs not used: Roome, Chavundura, Holmes.
Rotherham: Thompson; Rose (Bailey 78), Wood, Lucas (Peace-McDonald 62), Milsom, Bowery, Newton, Hall, Walker (Muskwe 78), Clarke-Harris, Derbyshire.
Subs not used: Denton, Norfolk.