The Football League Paper - - CHAMPIONSHIP - By Adam Hobbs

HE HAD waited more than a year to feel the ecstasy that comes with scor­ing a goal, but af­ter Chris O’Grady helped down Rother­ham, Bur­ton keeper Jon McLaugh­lin was full of praise for his ef­forts.

Thirty times since net­ting in Not­ting­ham For­est’s 3-0 de­feat of Ful­ham, O’Grady has laced his boots to no avail.

But on Thurs­day night the duck was bro­ken when he tapped in from close range on 36 min­utes, with Jack­son Irvine dou­bling the ad­van­tage five min­utes later.

Tom Adeyemi pulled one back for the Millers on the stroke of half-time, but they could find no way back and re­main rock-bot­tom with a moun­tain to climb if they are to sur­vive rel­e­ga­tion.

It was a night of tri­umph for Bur­ton though, who recordered their first-ever away vic­tory in the sec­ond tier and McLaugh­lin was de­lighted O’Grady and his team-mates had a night to

savour. He said: “The strik­ers are the un­sung he­roes, be­cause it’s not chance af­ter chance be­ing set on the plate for them, they have got to do a hell of a lot more for us and that’s what Chris has been do­ing this year.

“It’s great for him to get the re­ward and get him­self a goal and for it to come on a night where it gives us mas­sive win.

“That’s what we ask our strik­ers to do, they have to be up there and work in­cred­i­bly hard for us and do a lot of the dirty work.”

Rother­ham have looked out of their depth for much of this sea­son, yet were the bet­ter side against Bur­ton.

But, try as they might, Danny Ward, An­thony Forde, Dar­nell Fisher and Peter Odemwingie could find no way past McLaugh­lin in the sec­ond half as they fell to a 17th de­feat in 24 league games.

Rother­ham in­terim man­ager Paul Warne has a thank­less task on his hands, but was full of en­cour­age­ment ahead of to­mor­row’s York­shire derby with Leeds.

Warne said: We can’t beat our­selves up.

“I think they have be­lief amongst them­selves. If I had played in that game and we’d gone 2-0 down I would wilt a lit­tle bit be­cause I’d be think­ing, ‘how much bet­ter do I have to play to score a goal’. “We’ll watch the video and look at the good bits and the bad bits, but I said the good bits will eas­ily out­num­ber the bad bits. “No­body can say the lads gave up and I said to them at half-time, don’t go home and look in the rear view mir­ror and think I could have done a lit­tle bit more.”

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