Millers boss Paul Warne reflected on his side’s 2-1 defeat against Leeds United at the AESSEAL New York Stadium this afternoon.
Rotherham went toe-to-toe with the Championship’s leaders and took the lead through Semi Ajayi’s long-range beauty but a brace from Mateusz Klich inflicted a harsh defeat on the Millers late on.
“From an effort level, I can’t ask for a lot more,” said Warne. “I thought it was quite an even first half against a very good team, there’s no disputing that. There’s a reason they’re top of the league.
“I don’t think anyone came here expecting us to win, but I don’t mind being the underdog. I thought Semi took his goal really well and we had threats on set-pieces and throws and corners as well, as we always do. I thought we limited them to very few chances, first half.
“Second half, they applied pressure. The first goal is hugely disappointing for us and they kept applying the pressure. I thought, even though we couldn’t get out, we defended the holes really well and limited them to hardly anything. They had the ball but we limited them to very few chances.
“To concede that goal that late on was a bitter pill for the players and staff. We’ve worked hard all week, we did everything we can to make the lads as good as they can be. Unfortunately for today, it wasn’t enough.”
The Millers restricted Leeds to very few opportunities in front of goal even though the visitors enjoyed the majority of the ball, with Warne continuing, “In fairness we don’t like to let any teams play out from the back from goal-kicks so we always go full press, which is brave at times.
“We did limit them to very few chances but their substitutions improved them. I don’t think Marek made many saves, although they had a lot portion of the ball – which I expected because they had 70% of the ball at Stoke last week with 10 men, so there’s no shame in it. I just think when we won it back we didn’t make the right decisions to get it up the pitch. Overall, I’m proud of the lads’ efforts.
“I haven’t watched either goal back but it’s obviously disappointing to concede goals. They should take heart from their performance against a top-of-the-table team and, in fairness, they were very good.
“There was some good performances but for us to win football games we need 11 players to play on tilt.
“We’re playing against unbelievable teams and that’s why we want to be in this league. I think it will go down to the last game and the lads will never give up.”