Ipswich 1 Rotherham United 0: New year but same old story for Millers as winless drought goes on

Paul Warne, manager of Rotherham United (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Paul Warne, manager of Rotherham United (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
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It is a new year but the same old story for Rotherham.  

If Paul Warne's New Year resolution was to finally lead his team to an away win in the Championship then it got off to a horrible start as they went down to a 1-0 defeat at Ipswich.

This was an Ipswich side who had made a raft of signings in the week in a bid to save their season, but one that was cut adrift at the bottom of the table with just two wins to their name prior to the Millers' arrival.

On paper, they will not get a better chance to end their drought – which now stands at 39 second-tier games.

How many of those winless matches followed the narrative of this loss at Portman Road is up for debate, but it is plentiful.

The Millers lost the game to Will Keane's goal, which was the home side's only shot on target.

Meanwhile Warne's side peppered Ipswich's goal with 18 shots, but could only manage two on target.

It is that lack of quality in the final third that has been the main problem and unless Warne can somehow address the issue before the end of the month then the prospect of a second full season at this level without an away win is likely, not to mention relegation.

That is not to say Warne's band of brothers are not trying their hardest and the boss, who knows his side were worthy of a point, praised them.

“I thought we played really well and I’ve got no complaint of the lads' performance at all,” Warne said. “We needed a bit of quality on a couple of occasions but generally they were pretty outstanding and should be proud of what they try to do for us but unfortunately today it wasn’t enough.

“I think they only had one shot on target and I don’t think my keeper in the second half used his hands once and I think it was literally one-way traffic and I don’t think anyone, if we would have at least got a draw, would have any complaints, it just didn’t drop to us and it just wasn’t to be.”

Pretty much goalkeeper Marek Rodak's only real involvement was picking the ball out of the net after Keane, one of those new arrivals, fired home at the second attempt on the half-hour mark.

The play was almost exclusively in Ipswich's half after the break, but the Millers lacked the killer touch to create anything really glaring.

Michael Smith headed over from eight yards out when he might have expected to do better while Ipswich survived a goalmouth scramble at the end, with Joe Mattock having a shot blocked.

Ipswich Town: Gerken, Pennington, Chambers, Collins, Elder, Lankester (Dawkins 74), Skuse (Nsiala 90+1), Chalobah, Sears, Keane, Quaner (Downes 65).

Unused subs: Bialkowski, Harrison, Bishop, Huws.

Rotherham: Rodak; Vyner (Wood 89), Raggett (Williams 37), Robertson, Mattock, Ajayi, Forde (Yates 70), Vaulks, Wiles, Taylor, Smith.

Unused subs: Price, Palmer, Ihiekwe, Jones.

Referee: James Linington

Attendance: 20,893