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Rotherham United: Player ratings as the Millers seal their play-off place by beating Bristol Rovers 2-0

Star man Michael Smith
Star man Michael Smith
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The Star’s Millers man, Paul Davis, assesses the performances on a memorable day at AESSEAL New York Stadium.

ROTHERHAM (4-1-4-1)

MAREK RODAK 7

Crucial second-half save to deny Kyle Bennett and did everything well.

JOSH EMMANUEL 7

Better defensively and a real threat bursting forward.

MICHAEL IHIEKWE 8

Back in the side for the last three games and he’s been excellent in all three. Speed, anticipation and snap in the tackle.

RICHARD WOOD 7

Blood, elbows, challenges ... just what the skipper enjoys. Clean sheet says it all.

BEN PURRINGTON 6

Another steady display from the left-back who is doing all he can to keep Joe Mattock out of the side.

WILL VAULKS 6

A little leggy after a great midweek display at Gillingham, but still contributed.

JON TAYLOR 6

Never stopped running until he had to stop running because his legs would work no longer.

RICHIE TOWELL 7

Lacked his usual sharpness in possession, but nicked the ball off Bristol Rovers several times through sheer unstinting effort.

MATT PALMER 6

Rotherham have found a player, although this wasn’t his best game and he had to go off after being bashed in the face.

JOE NEWELL 6

Flickers of his danger. Didn’t do it throughout the 90 minutes.

MICHAEL SMITH 8

Scored a superb goal and a key man for the Millers. Constantly troubled the Rovers defence.

Substitutes:

CAOLAN LAVERY 7

A scorer and lively presence after replacing Richie Towell on 59 minutes.

RYAN WILLIAMS 6

Ran around and got involved as a 64th-minute substitute for Jon Taylor.

SEMI AJAYI 7

On for Matt Palmer after 76 minutes. Looks good as a defensive midfielder. Huge physical presence and good on the ball.

Subs not used: Price, Cummings, Forde, Ball.

BRISTOL ROVERS (4-4-2): Slocombe 6; J Clarke 5, Lockyer 6, Craig 6, Bola 6; Moore 6 (Mensah 69, 5), Lines 7, O Clarke 6, Bennett; 5 Nichols 5 (Telford 69, 5), Harrison 6 (Gaffney 78). Subs not used: Smith, Brown, Broadbent, Ruse.

Goals: Smith 9, Lavery 90 (Rotherham).

Referee: Andy Haines (Tyne & Wear) 4.

Attendance: 8,579 (608).

Match feature: Warne puts hand in pocket for play-off Millers