Rotherham United 0 Lincoln City 2: Millers brought back down to earth with a bump
If an opening day win gave Rotherham hope of a successful season then a sorry defeat in their first home outing seven days later was a sobering reminder of just how tough League One can be.
The Millers, buoyed by that 2-1 success at AFC Wimbledon last week, were brought back to earth with a bump as they slipped to a 2-0 defeat to Lincoln.
Paul Warne's side showed little of the attacking prowess that led to the boss describing them as “unplayable” against the Dons and they went down to a goals either side of half-time.
Shaun MacDonald put through his own net in the 42nd minute and then Harry Anderson headed home from a corner three minutes after the restart.
With Warne performing sizeable surgery to his squad following relegation, with a vast turnover of players, it is going to take time for his players to adapt to a new style of play this season.
They came up against a side who won promotion last term and are used to winning. Their game management was canny, they defended solidly and slowed the pace of the game down well.
Warne said: “It wasn't a great game or spectacle and the conditions played a major role in that.
“I don't think we played as well second half as we did in the first half. We just didn't take our chances when we were on top and we got sucker-punched.
“I think if we would have scored first half, when we were on top, and we had plenty of chances to do that, the game would have taken a different path. But it wasn't to be.
“Lincoln, and I don't blame them for doing this, slowed the game down literally to its death and it frustrated our players.
“We didn't make their keeper work hard enough. I wasn't over the moon with the performance. We didn't do enough to warrant a draw. The effort was there but the confidence wasn't.
“We have players who have only played together for three or four games. It's going to take a little bit of time to gel."
Lincoln manager Danny Cowley added: “We were playing against a team who have just come down from the Championship and we all know the difference between the Championship and League One, let alone League Two where we have come from.
“We knew there was going to be a huge gap to bridge. I'm just really proud of the boys and their efforts.”
Rotherham United: Iversen, Olosunde, Ihiekwe, Robertson, Mattock, Crooks, Barlaser (Wiles 57), MacDonald, Vassell (Proctor 65), Ladapo, Smith (Morris 57). Unused subs: Price, Wood, Cooper, Lindsay.
Lincoln City: Vickers, Eardley, Bolger, Bostwick, Toffolo, O'Connor (Chapman), Morrell, Payne, Grant (Andrade 71), Anderson, Walker (Akinde 77). Unused subs: Smith, Bradley, Adebayo-Smith, Lewis.
Attendance: 10,706 (2,320 from Lincoln).
Referee: Lee Swabey (Devon).