Charlton 1 v 1 Rotherham - Report
Rotherham United deservedly snatched a point in stoppage time when Danny Ward notched his first goal for the club to earn a 1-1 draw against Charlton at The Valley.
The Millers fell behind to a Jordan Cousins opener in the second half but Ward was on hand in the closing stages to level in front of the travelling supporters.
Steve Evans named an unchanged side to the one that beat Bolton Wanderers 4-2 in midweek, meaning that new signing Jack Hunt was named on the bench.
The Millers began brightly and came inches away from opening the scoring on eight minutes. A cross from the left found the head of Conor Newton but he was denied by the post with Addicks ‘keeper Marko Dmitrovic well beaten.
Evans’ side settled quickly into their stride whilst there was a sense of tension in the home side which seemed to stem from the already restless Valley terraces.
On 11 minutes it was Zeki Fryers who made good progress down the left but his cross into the six-yard box was stabbed wide by the rejuvenated Matt Derbyshire.
Charlton’s first attack came on 12 minutes when the lively Callum Harriott broke the offside trap down the right, but his low centre was turned behind by Kari Arnason. From the resulting corner Chris Solley picked out Igor Vetokele with a low cross but he fired just over the bar from 12 yards out.
The home side began to settle and hit the woodwork themselves on 18 minutes. Harriott again caused problems breaking down the right and his cross deflected off the chest of Frazer Richardson into the path of Johann Gudmundsson. The Icelandic international then brought the ball under control before hitting a cross-cum-shot which cannoned off the inside of the post and fell into the grateful hands of Adam Collin.
Just before the half hour Harriott picked up the ball in a central position after patient build up down the right, but he dragged his shot well wide of Collin’s left hand post.
The Millers seemed to lose their attacking influence as the half wore on with the home side slowly growing in confidence. Another Solley corner on 38 minutes was met by an acrobatic effort by Andre Bikey that shaved Collin’s crossbar.
The Millers did threaten the Charlton goal before the break when Paul Green picked out Richardson on the right wing. His cross into the area found the onrushing Green again, but the ball cannoned off his shins and safely into the palms of Dmitrovic.
Charlton Athletic 0 v 0 Rotherham United
The Millers started to look dangerous on the counter attack after the break with the combative Richie Smallwood winning possession on half-way which sparked a break the down the right. The ball was switched in-field for Ben Pringle and after setting himself for a long range effort, he tried to lift the ball into the area for a teammmate only for Dmitrovic to claim at the back post.
Charlton hit-back on 52 minutes when Jordan Cousins had two bites at Rhoys Wiggins’ dangerous low cross, but first Craig Morgan and then a combination of Millers defenders thwarted his effort on goal. Four minutes later Milos Veljkovic fired a shot towards goal but again Collin remained untested as his effort sailed wide.
Just before the hour mark Vetokele’s knockdown was met by a firm shot from Gudmundsson, but Arnason made a terrific block to deny his Icelandic compatriot.
The Millers made the first change with Crystal Palace loanee Hunt making his first appearance in a Rotherham shirt, replacing Newton on the right side of midfield.
On 68 minutes a Pringle free-kick found the head of Morgan whose looping effort had to be tipped over by Dmitrovic. The following corner sparked controversy when the ball drifted to the back post only to deflect wide, but several Millers players surrounding referee Scott Duncan claiming it was deflected wide off a Charlton hand, but the official gave only a corner which was comfortably cleared.
The Millers looked dangerous again on 72 minutes when Arnason flicked a pass inside for Green who rode a challenge before hitting a goalbound effort, but Wiggins cleared from just inside his six-yard area with Dmitrovic beaten.
The pressure looked to have paid off on 77 minutes when Derbyshire had the ball in the net only to be denied by the offside flag. Hunt’s deep cross found Pringle whose centre wasn’t cleared by Bikey, Derbyshire pounced around six yards from goal to fire into the net but was deemed offside by the official on the near side.
The Millers continued to crank up the pressure and when Charlton sub Christophe Lepoint gave the ball to Fryers his low cross was side-footed towards goal by sub Danny Ward, but Dmitrovic held on low down to his left.
Against the run of play the Millers then fell behind. Lepoint was picked out on the edge of the area; he held the ball up with his back to goal before squeezing a pass to Cousins who fired past Collin who was left with no chance.
The Millers came so close to an instant leveller when sub Adam Hammill’s corner was headed down by Green but Dmitrovic made a sprawling save at full stretch to deny the Republic of Ireland international.
In stoppage time the Millers were deservedly rewarded with an equaliser. Hammill, who had just flashed a shot narrowly wide moments earlier, sent in a cross from deep to find Ward who toe-poked the ball beyond Dmitrovic.
Charlton 1 v 1 Rotherham
Charlton Athletic: Dmitrovic, Veljkovic (Lepoint 79), Bikey-Amougou, Gudmundsson, Harriott (Gomez 89), Vetokele (Watt 62), Wiggins, Buyens, Solly, Cousins, Ben Haim.
Unused: Etheridge, Wilson, Onyewu, Fox.
Millers: Collin, Richardson, Arnason, Morgan, Fryers, Newton (Hunt 60), Green, Smallwood, Pringle (Hammill 79), Derbyshire, Sammon (Ward 76).
Unused: Thompson, Wood, Bowery, Barmby.