F-T: Rotherham United 0 Fulham 1

Rotherham United v Fulham
Rotherham United v Fulham
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Rotherham United's relegation from the Championship was officially confirmed as they went down 1-0 to Fulham at New York Stadium.

The drop has been coming for months and, with seven matches remaining, the Millers now know for certain they will spend next season in League One.

Danny Ward heads just wide in the second minute

Danny Ward heads just wide in the second minute

They lost to a 65th-minute goal by Sone Aluko who eventually forced the ball home after a long goalmouth scramble that had seen an heroic block from Darnell Fisher and a save by Lewis Price.

In a season of record-breaking lows, this was Rotherham's 30th defeat and their eighth on the trot. They are 24 points away from the safety mark with only 21 left to play for.

Paul Warne's side could have been ahead inside two minutes as Semi Ajayi fed Joe Newell whose left-wing cross was met by a flying Danny Ward header which went just wide.

Fulham had most of the possession, but it was the Millers who threatened again, Lee Frecklington's curling long-range effort being kept out by a fine save from visiting goalkeeper David Button in the 17th minute.

The game went up a gear after the break and Chris Martin should have put the play-off-chasing Cottagers head after 53 minutes but somehow failed to convert Tom Cairney's low cross from in front of an open goal.

A minute later, it was Rotherham's turn to threaten and Jon Taylor wasted a golden opportunity, poking the ball straight at Button from Newell's pull-back.

Six minutes after the home side had appealed in vain for handball in the Fulham area, the away team struck through Aluko.

Ward had two chances in lightning succession in the 81st minute but saw both efforts blocked and Aimen Belaid fired over the bar from an inviting position in time added on.

Warne sent out his team in an attacking 4-4-2 formation, with right-sided Fisher preferred at left-back to Ben Purrington, who was carrying a hamstring niggle, and loan striker Carlton Morris coming in for a home debut up front.

Morris looked good before departing in the 62nd minutes, but that was of little consolation on a day when yet another loss served notice that the Millers' three-year stay in the second tier was over.

Rotherham United (4-4-2): Price; Vaulks, Ajayi, Belaid, Fisher (Purrington 76); Taylor, Smallwood, Frecklington (Forde 79), Newell; Ward, Morris (Yates 62). Subs not used: O'Donnell, Kelly, Wood, Bray.

Fulham (4-2-3-1): Button; Fredericks, Kalas, Madl, Malone (Ream 90+2); McDonald, Johansen; Aluko (Sessegnon 90+1), Cairney, Kebano (Ayite 63); Martin. Subs not used: Bettinelli, Cyriac, Sigurdsson, Petsos.

Goals: Aluko 65 (Fulham).

Referee: Tim Robinson (West Sussex).

Attendance: 9,004 (1,245).

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