F-T: Rotherham United 0 Reading 1

Rotherham United v Reading
Rotherham United v Reading
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The new era under Kenny Jackett began in frustrating fashion for Rotherham United as they suffered a narrow home defeat at the hands of Reading.

The Millers had good chances to score and also showed defensive resilience lacking under previous boss Alan Stubbs in the face of some concerted second-half Reading pressure.

But they fell behind with only four minutes to go when Paul McShane volleyed into the roof of the net and suffered a seventh straight Championship loss.

After Jackett had received a great ovation as he acknowledged the home fans, Rotherham made an encouraging start and took the game to the Royals.

Joe Newell's second-minute curler was heading for the top corner until goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi clawed it away for a corner, Jon Taylor cut inside and shot wide after 11 minutes and then Richard Wood and Dexter Blackstock combined seven minutes later but couldn't force the ball home.

The match came to life in the second half as Jackett's men tore into Jaap Stam's side.

In a three-minute spell from the 56th minute only a superb Al-Habsi save kept out Richard Wood's towering header, Danny Ward was played clean through by Lee Frecklington only for Al-Habsi to intervene again and Ward's next shot was going in until Yann Kermogant produced a stunning block.

Reading were awarded a penalty on the hour when Dael Fry was judged to have brought down Joey Van Den Berg, but Camp was equal to Garath McCleary's spot-kick, diving low to his left and deflecting it away.

The visitors had the better of the game after then and Rotherham old boy John Swift hit the bar, although Forde could have forced an equaliser two minutes after McShane's strike, shooting straight at Al-Habsi after being played through by Ward on the left.

Jackett had wasted no time in opting for his favoured 4-4-2 formation, bringing in centre-forward Blackstock for his first start to partner Ward up front.

Joe Mattock was recalled at left-back and there was a welcome return in the centre of defence for Wood, who has been out of favour under Stubbs since the second game of the season.

Attacker Izzy Brown had to settle for a place on the bench.

It was a disappointing outcome, but there was a positive feeling around New York Stadium and there will be other days for the new man and the Millers.

Rotherham United (4-4-2): Camp; Fisher, Fry, Wood, Mattock; Taylor, Halford, Frecklington, Newell (Brown 65); Ward, Blackstock (Forde 75). Subs not used: Price, Vaulks, Forster-Caskey, Ball, Belaid.

Reading (4-1-4-1): Al-Habsi; Gunter, Moore, Van Der Berg, Obita; Kelly (McShane 28); McCleary, Swift (Evans 89), Williams, Beerens; Kermorgant. Subs not used: Moore, Samuel, Blackett, Gravenberch, Watson.

Goals: McShane 86 (Reading).

Referee: Scott Duncan (Northumberland).

Attendance: 8,800 (644).