REPORT | Ipswich Town 2 v 2 Rotherham
Rotherham United had their first away win of the season snatched from their grasp with the final kick of the game as David McGoldrick’s stoppage time strike meant they had to settle for a 2-2 draw with Ipswich Town.
A valiant performance from the Millers saw them come from behind after Freddie Sears had opened the scoring after just three minutes, but Danny Ward’s excellent brace put them ahead going into the final seconds of the game.
However, their hard work was undone by a moment of brilliance from McGoldrick who thundered a volley beyond Camp from 25 yards to rescue a point for his side.
Rotherham United boss Jackett made one change to the side that was selected for his maiden outing in his new club’s colours against Reading, with Lee Frecklington’s omission from the squad meaning that Will Vaulks slotted into the vacant midfield berth.
New signing Peter Odemwingie had to settle for a place on the bench after joining the Millers’ ranks on Monday, while Grant Ward, Tom Lawrence and Leon Best were all named in the Ipswich Town squad to face their former side by Mick McCarthy.
The energetic Sears made himself known to the Millers’ defence as soon as the referee had sounded his whistle in Suffolk, bursting into advanced positions on the right and then the left to deliver dangerous crosses.
However, it would be from a cross provided by another Ipswich player which he would make his most telling contribution after three minutes had elapsed. Following a foul from Greg Halford on the wing, Lawrence whipped in a low free kick which the one-time West Ham forward applied the deftest of touches to take it beyond Camp at the near post.
Jackett’s side looked unaffected by conceding so early and immediately threatened an equaliser moments later when Vaulks found Darnell Fisher on the right who drilled an effort at goal, only to see it blocked.
The Millers would maintain that pressure and would only have to wait until seven minutes to find themselves back on level terms.
After Jon Taylor’s burst down the right won the visitors a corner, Joe Newell delivered a wicked cross which found Danny Ward in the box, who pounced to notch his seventh of the season after a knockdown from Wood.
Things settled down in the aftermath of the equaliser as both sides looked to get a firm foothold on the game. The next foray of note came for the hosts as David McGoldrick looked to carve the defence with a nice pass into the path of Sears in the box, but his cutback flashed across the face of goal before Darnell Fisher applied a good block to a shot at the back post.
The combination of Wood and Danny Ward in the final third almost yielded another Millers goal of a very similar ilk to their opener as Jackett’s side attacked just before the half hour-mark. There looked little danger when the delivery was floated in towards the stand in Rotherham United captain, but his knockdown was a clever one to Danny Ward, who twisted and turned before having his goalbound effort blocked.
Camp’s only real involvement of the afternoon to this point had been to retrieve the ball from the back of the net following Sears’ strike but he was called into action 10 minutes before the interval.
A looping cross from Grant Ward was met by the onrushing figure of full back Myles Kenlock who headed at the bottom corner, before being thwarted by a fantastic reaction save by Camp who palmed the ball clear down to his right.
Half Time | Ipswich Town 1 v 1 Rotherham
The second half started in the same manner as the first and the crowd at Portman Road would once again only need to wait for three minutes of the action for the first goal of the half.
After Halford’s withdrawal through injury it looked as though the Millers may have lost their weapon from long throws but Vaulks proved that was not the case on 48 minutes. The former Falkirk midfielder’s arrowed throw from the right was latched onto by Danny Ward in the box, who rifled home a volley with a sweet connection at the near post for his second of the afternoon to put his side ahead.
The Tractor Boys had no answer to Vaulks’ service from the touchline and his delivery from a throw almost paved the way for Jackett’s side to double their advantage. This time the ball evaded everybody in the box with the exception of Wood, who couldn’t quite turn his volley on the stretch the right side of the post.
With the Millers in the ascendency the hosts were looking for a spark to get them back into the game and experienced frontman McGoldrick looked to provide just that on 63 minutes.
There looked to be little danger when he picked the ball up 30 yards from goal but after some patient build-up play, the former Nottingham Forest man unleashed a powerful drive at goal which Camp would have been pleased to see fly well over.
This injected some life into the hosts’ attack and following the introductions of Best and Jonny Williams, McCarthy’s side would trouble Camp again.
Best, who played a pivotal role with some late goals in the Millers’ survival at the end of the last campaign, almost dealt them a cruel blow as he attacked a cross from the left, but following some brave defending, it was McGoldrick who drilled over to spurn a good chance for the home side.
The home attacks kept coming but Jackett’s men remained resilient. Former Millers loanee Lawrence almost caught everyone off guard with a corner that looked goalbound until Camp punched clear as far as McGoldrick, who once again failed to hit the target.
The Millers were dealt a heartbreaking blow with the final kick of the game and after an Ipswich attack was only half cleared, the dangerous McGoldrick latched onto a dropping ball to fire home a stunning volley which beat Camp from 25 yards out and ensure his side came away with a share of the spoils at 2-2.
Full Time | Ipswich Town 2 v 2 Millers
Attendance | 15,247 (205 Away)
Ipswich Town | Bialkowski, Chambers ©, Berra, Webster, Kenlock; G Ward (Best 67), Bishop (Williams 67), Skuse, Lawrence; McGoldrick, Sears.
Unused | Gerken, Varney, Bru, Grant, Emmanuel.
Millers | Camp; Fisher, Fry, Wood ©, Mattock; Taylor (Odemwingie 80), Halford (Ball 35), Vaulks, Newell; D Ward, Blackstock.
Unused | Price, Kelly, Forde, Forster-Caskey, Brown.