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Match Reports

Report: Rotherham 0-0 Wycombe

Gritty Blues earn point.

19 October 2021

Wanderers earned a creditable point from a 0-0 draw with fellow high-flyers Rotherham United at the New York Stadium on Tuesday night.

Clear chances were at a premium for both sides but both managers will be pleased with the heart and endeavour shown to keep two strong attacks at bay.

Gareth Ainsworth made three changes from the side that started in the 2-0 win at Doncaster on Saturday, with Sam Vokes returning to lead the line after the birth of his daughter on Friday, and Dominic Gape and Daryl Horgan also came into the XI as Adebayo Akinfenwa, Curtis Thompson and Brandon Hanlan dropped out.

The Millers started with fire in their bellies, with Michael Smith crunching Josh Scowen with an early tackle before Ollie Rathbone rushed in to berate Scowen who lay prone on the floor. Wanderers won a corner from the resulting free-kick, and Joe Jacobson's delivery was headed just past the post by Ryan Tafazolli.

Rotherham hit back with direct approaches into the box of their own, threatening from a corner and long throw before the Chairboys broke at pace, and Horgan was freed by Gape in a counter-attack, only to pick out the keeper rather than the onrushing Garath McCleary with his cross.

The tempo slowed a little, due in no small part to a delay while Joe Mattock received treatment for an injury, but Wanderers were soon back into a fast counter-attacking style when David Stockdale collected Smith's dangerous knockdown and started an instant break, freeing McCleary down the right, whose cross to Obita was nicked off the head of the wing-back six yards out.

The home side began to enjoy more attacking territory without enough of an end product for their liking; Smith cushioned a header into the arms of Stockdale from 12 yards out, but generally the 0-0 scoreline was a fair reflection of the opening half hour.

There were maybe more talking points off the ball, with Smith escaping punishment for a shove on Vokes, and Rathbone seeing yellow for a foul on McCarthy.

Both sides traded free-kicks in promising areas as the half drew to a close, but Rotherham wasted their opportunity and Wycombe almost scored on the counter, with Gape sending a delightful ball to Horgan, whose shot was deflected wide. Wanderers' dangerous free-kick arrived for a foul on McCleary, but Tafazolli planted his header over the bar.

Tafazolli was booked on the stroke of half-time for a foul before both sides took a 15-minute breather for what looked certain to be another full-throttle second half.

And so it proved. Within five minutes, Shane Ferguson was booked for hacking down Jason McCarthy on the edge of the box, and Jacobson's free-kick was kept out by a combination of keeper and post.

Moments later, Scowen drilled over the bar after Vickers threw himself at a Horgan cross to punch to the edge of the box, and then McCleary had a low shot deflected wide after a Jacobson counter.

Then Will Grigg had an effort for the Millers which took a nick and went wide, before his replacement from the bench - Freddie Ladapo - couldn't quite convert a loose ball after Stockdale tipped Chiedozie Ogbene's dangerous cross away from goal.

Wycombe swapped Horgan for Sullay Kaikai with 20 minutes to go, though by now the Millers were in the ascendancy and Wanderers needed to turn the tide.

Brandon Hanlan was next off the bench, replacing Garath McCleary, and the Blues were able to stem the flow of attacks without creating many of their own. Ollie Rathbone's low pea-roller into Stockdale's arms was the only real effort of note for some time as the game entered the final five minutes.

Jacobson had a corner headed off the line by Smith in the first of six minutes' injury time, and Ben Wiles jinked brilliantly into the box down the left for Rotherham, only to miscue his cross and enable Stockdale to gather.

Curtis Thompson came on for Dominic Gape with moments left, and his long throws caused a couple of moments of panic for the Millers, but the game finished goalless and Wycombe return south with four points from their Yorkshire adventure.

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