Honest boss Paul Warne has dismissed suggestions that the late goal which cost Rotherham United a Championship victory over Blackburn Rovers should never have been allowed to stand.
Millers goalkeeper Richard O’Donnell claimed he’d been fouled at the corner which led to to Stephen Kelly putting the ball into his own net five minutes from time and remonstrated with referee Oliver Langford.
Bottom club Rotherham had been leading 1-0 at New York Stadium on Saturday through Jon Taylor’s 47th-minute opener and were on course for a fourth victory in Warne’s 14-match spell in charge.
But the caretaker manager said after the first draw of his reign: “No, Richard wasn’t impeded at all. It’s a fair goal for me.
“Richard complained, but I’ve told him I don’t think it’s a foul. I’m not one of those people who hides behind that sort of thing. It’s a fair goal. They deserved it.”
Left-back Ben Purrington, aged 20, and centre-half Semi Ajayi, 23, made home debuts for the Millers, who entertain promotion-chasing Huddersfield Town on Tuesday night.
“Ben was okay,” Warne said. “I feel for him because he’s a young lad and I think he played in a really nervy first half.
“I’m disappointed with his teammates that they didn’t help him out more. It was a difficult home debut and I think he camethrough it okay. I thought Semi did well.”
Midfielder Tom Adeyemi, back after illness, was replaced in the 77th minute by Will Vaulks but should be fit for the Terriers clash which sees a New York return for former Rotherham loan star Izzy Brown.
“I just felt they had brought legs on to the pitch and had a bit more pace,” Warne said. “I needed to bring an athlete on because I thought Tom was tiring a little bit. He’s been ill and hasn’t done much training recently.”
Meanwhile, Taylor is hoping his fourth strike of the season, which ended his four-month drought in front of goal, will see him start hitting the target more often.
“Hopefully I can kick on now and get a few more,” he said.
The club’s record signing, who has found himself in and out of the starting 11, added: “I haven’t been playing as much as I would like to, but I work hard every single day in training.
“It’s a team game and whenever I get my chance I have to take it.”
The Millers are 14 points adrift of safety with only 15 matches left.
Taylor said: “It’s a massive game on Tuesday, a (Yorkshire) derby. Every game now is huge for us. It’s for the fans and hopefully we can put on a show and show how much it means. We will work our socks off to try to get a result.”