Rotherham United managed to encourage their home fans with both the result and the performance against Bolton Wanderers.
Their first game back at the New York Stadium definitely represented a step-up in their pre-season preparations.
And although little should be read into these sorts of games Rotherham were better than the Championship outfit. Steve Evans’ managerial counterpart and fellow Glaswegian Dougie Freedman picked a side mixed with experience at the back and largely youthful up front.
Rotherham’s starting 11 included new signings Richard Brindley and David Worrall, and was unlikely to be too far removed from the one Evans will pick on the opening day of the season.
Unbeaten from four games so far, Rotherham had a head start over Bolton who were in their first game of pre-season.
Rotherham could have had the lead after 15 minutes when Kari Arnason rose highest to head Ben Pringle’s corner over.
Marvin Sordell and Robert Hall combined on 42 minutes to ensure Bolton went into the break ahead, Hall’s clever play down the right finished by Sordell.
It took a desperate block from Cian Bolger to deny Daniel Nardiello from inside the box as Rotherham started the half dominantly and playing with the same urgency you would expect from a league game.
The goal came through smart work from Ben Pringle. On the corner of the box and with nobody closing him down, a shot looked the best option but instead he picked out Alex Revell at the backpost and he guided a diving header in. Rotherham pinched the win late on when Nardiello finished well from another Pringle pass on 86 minutes.
Rotherham: Shearer, Brindley, Morgan, Davis (Rose), Skarz (Rowe), Worrall, Frecklington, Arnason, Pringle (Walker), Nardiello, Revell.
Subs not used: Collin, Mullins, O’Connor, Hylton, Bradley, Milsom, Noble, Agard, Tidser.
Bolton: Bogdan, Mears (Baptiste), :Mills (Knight), Bolger (Riley), Ream (Tierney), Hall (Odelusi), Andrews (Kamara), Gregus, Lester (Eagles), Sordell (Pratley), Wilkinson (C. Davies).
Subs not used: Lynch, Medo, Trialist,