Millers FT: Leyton Orient 1, Rotherham United 0

Alex Revell leaps to fire in a header against his former club
Alex Revell leaps to fire in a header against his former club
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A first-half strike from Leyton Orient’s Kevin Lisbie was enough to condemn Rotherham United to defeat at the home of the League One leaders.

There have been lots of praise for the East London club so far - and for manager Russell Slade, who has done an excellent job here.

The home side certainly began with real urgency, and it needed excellent covering by Bradley in the first 30 seconds to stop a link from Lisbie and Mooney reaching Cox six yards out.

Twice more the right back was involved in important covering work, once with a header at the far post.

Then he appeared at the other end and might have scored from Rotherham’s first threat.

Agard won a corner, Pringle took it on the right. It just cleared Revell and Bradley was charging in, but he just couldn’t connect as the ball flashed across the six yard area.

Kieran Agard holds the ball under pressure from Gary Sawyer

Kieran Agard holds the ball under pressure from Gary Sawyer

The early pressure was coming from Orient, and Revell was twice back in his area to use his heading ability to end danger.

Rotherham then put together a useful move and Orient worked hard, and as a unit, to try and get the ball back and it was already clear this could well be a good contest between two hard working sides who were closing each other down quickly.

Rotherham had succeeded in getting through that important first period, but it was clear that Orient had the confidence that you’d expect from a side who have started the season so very well.

They were also looking to get the ball forward early when possible for the front two of veteran Lisbie and Mooney who have, by all accounts, formed a very good understanding. There were times when Arnason had to be at his best in reading situations.

However, on 27 minutes Orient went in front - and Rotherham were really unfortunate in how the eventual chance came about.

Odubajo caused the original damage before Bradley made an intervention close in. The ball ran to Cox, only for Collin to make a fantastic save. But the ball appeared to strike someone, loop high, drop onto the bar and came off at just the right angle for LISBIE to sidefoot into the net.

It was a cruel way to go behind, and made an already tough-looking task that much harder.

A split second after Revell was clearly pushed in the back but got no foul, Arnason brought down Mooney and was booked. So far, Orient were getting the benefit of any doubt off the referee, that much was clear.

Rotherham had a good attacking spell but Orient were well organised and also getting men back around their area.

Morgan became the second booking for his aerial barge into Lisbie. A harshly awarded free-kick - given by a linesman - ended with Cox firing a piledriver from 18 yards which, fortunately for Rotherham, deflected wide off Bradley.

From the corner, Vincelot was clear but headed over.

Opportunities had been scarce for Rotherham, but they almost scored right on half-time.

O’Connor’s corner from the left curled in wickedly, the keeper was beaten, but it just evaded Revell who was so close he ended up in the side netting as it brushed the far post.

Rotherham certainly couldn’t afford to concede a second goal and Cox struck a fierce 20 yarder which Collin touched over.

A vital interception by Bradley on the edge of the area sparked a Rotherham break. Agard moved towards the area but Revell, instead of pulling away into space, moved the wrong way and Agard then shot wide.

O’Connor was replaced by Nardiello who went wide left (Agard was now down the middle) and Rotherham enjoyed a good spell of attacking.

Rotherham were really taking the game to Orient and forcing them to defend stoutly. However, a home break was real danger until a tremendous challenge on Mooney, who was clear, by Morgan who will miss next week’s home game with Colchester through a one-match ban due to his five bookings.

Rotherham were having a real go and there was another sharp move but Agard fired into the side net, and then Revell deflected a cross away from the unmarked Bradley.

With ten minutes left Eaves replaced Revell.

Rotherham had given it a good go in the second half and tested the home side who had been on the back foot, but had defended well enough to deny the Millers.

The last throw came when Tubbs replaced Skarz, but Frecklington couldn’t make something of a loose ball in a crowded box as the Millers couldn’t find that elusive equaliser.