Rotherham United’s Academy tasted defeat for just the second time this season in the 2021/22 Youth Alliance League as they slipped to a 1-0 loss at the hands of Harrogate Town.
A solitary goal proved to be the difference in North Yorkshire where the hosts prevailed on Saturday 2nd October, despite Millers stopper Alfie Burnett managing to save a penalty with the scores still at 0-0.
Academy Manager Richard Hairyes admitted that it wasn’t the Millers’ day, but was pleased to see them continuing to fashion chances and showing a desire to bounce back at the earliest possible opportunity.
"In the first 20 or 30 minutes we could have scored four if we'd taken our chances. We didn't and in the end that proved costly,” he told www.themillers.co.uk.
"Sam Greenhouse had a good chance which he hit straight at the goalkeeper and then they had one up the other end after a slip from one of our defenders.
"It was scrappy, but we got to half time and I told the lads not to panic.
"We had Tom Shephard playing at right back, who is an under-16 and Ben Hatton played left mid for us. We had seven players missing which was a blow but also an opportunity for others.
"Mack Warne got 50 minutes which was a positive because he's been missing for a while with injury.
"The second half kicked off and for the first five or 10 minutes we penned them in and I genuinely thought we'd score - I think if we had, we would have gone on and won it.
"Then they had a similar good spell and won a penalty which Alfie saved, before they hit the post with a really good effort.
"Their goal summed up the day really in that it was a bit of an anomaly and that just left me feeling like it wasn't going to be our day.
"We put young James Simmonite on as well, who is an under-15.
"Ciaran McGuckin missed a couple of chances that normally and with the form he's in, he buries more often than not.
"We had a few more half chances but just couldn't put the ball in the back of the net.
"All of the above said, we're having a good season. We've got a lot of injuries and whilst that isn't an excuse, it did play a part. We've got so many positives to take from our season so far.
"I can already tell that the lads aren't dwelling on it and having spoken to them they've already drawn a line under it and are looking forward to our next game."
Academy | Burnett; Shephard (Watson 45), Carroll, Exton, Jenkinson; Greenhouse, Douglas, Durose, Hatton (Warne 40); McGuckin, Clark (Simmonite 75).
Unused | Ford, Day.
Youth Alliance League - Correct as of 04/10/21
|1||Rotherham United U18||7||5||0||2||17||8||9||15|
|2||Grimsby Town U18||7||4||2||1||10||6||4||14|
|3||Lincoln City U18||7||4||0||3||14||9||5||12|
|4||Scunthorpe United U18||7||3||1||3||18||15||3||10|
|5||Bradford City U18||5||3||0||2||13||11||2||9|
|6||Mansfield Town U18||6||2||1||3||9||8||1||7|
|7||Doncaster Rovers U18||6||2||1||3||9||15||-6||7|
|8||Huddersfield Town U18||6||2||1||3||8||18||-10||7|
|9||Harrogate Town U18||6||2||0||4||7||10||-3||6|
|10||Burton Albion U18||7||2||0||5||11||16||-5||6|