PASS AND MOVE DELIGHTS EVANS
New-look Millers a sight to behold
ROTHERHMAM manager Steve Evans gave an emphatic thumbs up to his side’s new passing style as they went within a whisker of claiming a notable Championship scalp.
Emmanuel Ledesma rattled the Forest bar and an initially wrongfooted Karl Darlow kicked away a goalbound effort from Reece James in either half whilst the visitors failed to put a single effort on target.
A delighted Evans purred: “Our performance was absolutely super. We got the ball down and played and we will keep doing that and getting better.
“It’s extremely tough to get points in this league but we totally dominated last week at Cardiff and we’ve done the same here.
“Goalscorers can cost 20 to £25,000 a week which we can’t match but we will keep trying to find them.
“We were by far the better side and they needed some of the tenacity of a Stuart Pearce side to throw their bodies in the way.
“We always look up and are just three or four points away from being in mid-table.The goals will come if we keep playing like that.”
The Forest mystery is not why they have slid down the table, but how they led it in the early stages of the season. They failed to put a single effort on target against modest opponents and were the more grateful of the two sides to get a point.
They started shakily as a combination of a poor back pass from Kelvin Wilson and comedy goalkeeping by Darlow nearly presented Alex Revell with an open goal in just the second minute.
The limit of Forest’s guile was Danny Fox’s long hopeful diagonals in the direction of Britt Assombalonga and Dexter Blackstock whilst Michail Antonio carved out a couple of half chances with his speed.
A disappointing half seemed to be heading for stalemate until Rotherham lit up the match with two near misses within 90 seconds.
Ledesma, whose trickery provided Millers with their chief threat, smashed a 30-yarder against the Forest bar with Darlow beaten, before Tom Lawrence side-footed wastefully wide from 12 yards after good work by the impressive James.
Forest started the second half better with Henri Lansbury arriving in the box late to send a header over from Antonio’s cross before Blackstock saw his header rulled out for a foul after 57 minutes.
Pringle miscued from a cross from the prominent Lawrence before both Lawrence and Ledesma went close from 20 yards or more.
Darlow’s key, slightly fortunate save, came in the 71st minute. He took one step to his left as James struck his shot but still managed to kick the ball away at his near post.
At the other end Assombalonga was inches away from an 80thminute winner for Forest as he stretched in vain at the far post after Antonio headed on Jamie Paterson’s cross.
Forest assistant manager Steve Wigley insisted:“I’m disappointed we had a perfectly good goal ruled out.
“On 80 per cent of occasions the referee wouldn’t have given a foul.
“It was also something new to see an official end the game after awarding us a corner kick.
“Having said that, we must do better with our attacking pace.
“We were sound defensively against Rotherham and I don’t think they troubled us too much. Most of their efforts at goal were from long range.
“This is a tough place to get a result but there are always going to be big expectations at Forest.
“I don’t look at the table but still believe we have enough to challenge for promotion.”
MY BALL: Forest’s Dexter Blackstock heads in but the goal was disallowed
UNDER PRESSURE: Rotherham’s Adam Collin tries to punch the ball in heavy traffic
STAR MAN EMMA