Rotherham United wrapped up their 2022/23 pre-season campaign with victory over Crewe Alexandra at Mornflake Stadium, thanks to first half goals from Conor Washington and Georgie Kelly.
Paul Warne’s side had the better of things in the opening proceedings and Washington’s goal after just 40 seconds was a sign of things to come in the opening 45.
Daniel Agyei did pull on back for the home side just before the break, as the Alex pressed for an equaliser in the second half. The Millers too had their chances in the second period, with Kioso going to closes in a lively affair in Cheshire.
The Millers made the perfect start at Mornflake Stadium and were ahead with less than a minute played when Conor Washington smashed home a half-volley to complete a fine team move.
The away side continued their strong start and could have been further ahead when Georgie Kelly rose highest to make contact with Ferguson’s in-swinging corner, seeing his header deflect off an Alex defender before going out for another corner.
Ferguson was clearly making his presence known on the left flank and again delivered a dangerous centre which Kelly was inches away from meeting.
There was danger at the other end on 25 minutes when it looked as though Lachlan Brook ahd found the on-rushing Daniel Agyei with a precise through pass, but Hall timed a sliding challenge superbly to prevent the striker going through one-on-one with Johansson.
On the half hour mark, Agyei held the ball up well for the home side before laying the ball off for Brook to strike on the edge of the box, curling an effort down the throat of Johansson.
Washington was appealing for a penalty just four minutes later, when he executed a fantastic touch to take a long pass out of the sky before bearing down on goal. The forward was appealing for a penalty after close attention from Rod McDonald, but the challenge was deemed a fair one by the referee.
The Millers took a further grip of proceedings six minutes before half time, when Ferguson’s delicious delivery from the left was converted by Kelly, who got up above his marker to head home from close-range.
The two goal cushion didn’t last long however, as the home side pulled one back almost immediately through Agyei, who side-footed home a low centre from Finney.
HALF TIME | Crewe 1 v 2 Rotherham
The Millers forced the first opportunity of the half when Wiles tested Richards with a low effort from 18 yards, following some incisive build-up play on the edge of the area.
Johansson was called into action five minutes after the restart to make a fairly routine save to prevent Finney converting Ainley’s cross from the left.
Rotherham broke through Washington who found Wiles lurking 18 yards from goal. The midfielder hammered the ball into the ground before seeing his strike whistle just wide of the far post.
Kioso was presented with an even better chance to make it 3-1 just moments later, when he broke free of Mellor before forcing Richards into a strong right-handed save.
Agyei was close to adding his second on the hour mark when he broke clear of Wood before taking aim from distance, forcing Johansson to tip his effort wide.
Crewe were denied an equalising goal thanks to a superb double save from Johansson. A low ball into the box found it’s way through for Agyei who saw his powerful strike from close-range turned onto the crossbar by the Swede, who reacted quickly to then prevent Ainley converting the follow-up.
Substitute Joel Holvey planted the ball onto the head of Wood on 76 minutes, as the skipper directed his header just wide of the post as Crewe survived.
FULL TIME | Crewe 1 v 2 Rotherham
Rotherham | Johansson; Harding (Hull 75’), Hall (Wood 45’), McCart (Humphreys 45’); Kioso (Holvey 75’), Barlaser (Durose 75’), Lindsay, Rathbone (Wiles 36’), Ferguson (Odoffin 45’); Kelly (Warne 75’), Washington.
SUBS | Vickers.