ROTHERHAM United gave Premier League new boys Huddersfield Town a scare before bowing out of the Carabao Cup at the John Smith’s Stadium.
Semi Ajayi’s early strike raised hopes of an upset and a first away win in 16 months but the Terriers struck twice in the second half to win 2-1.
There were no less than 18 changes across both teams from the weekend, with Rotherham accounting for eight of them. Only goalkeeper Richard O’Donnell, defender Ajayi and striker Jamie Proctor were retained from Saturday’s league loss at Peterborough.
The fans had only just taken their seats when the Millers scored from their first attack. The ball broke from a corner kick and Anthony Forde cross saw Ajayi steam in to head home.
Despite Huddersfield moving the ball as well as expected, Rotherham put in a diligent defensive shift for the rest of the first half, their biggest scares a dipping effort Kasey Palmer and a Christopher Schindler header that drifted just wide.
Millers celebrate opener
The excellent Proctor made way for Kieffer Moore at half time but the tie was soon turned on its head by two goals in three minutes. A needless shirt pull on Laurent Depoitre gave Town sub Peter Billing the chance to equalise from the penalty spot and the Millers were only just digesting that blow when some clever work in the box ended with Joe Lolley rolling the ball home for 2-1.
Rotherham tried to fight back. Moore saw his close-range stab blocked right on the line by the legs of goalkeeper Joel Coleman.
Paul Warne threw on Jonson Clarke-Harris and then Alex Bray to try and find an equaliser and it seemed to have arrived when Will Vaulks stooped to head in, only for the effort to be chalked off for a foul.
There was also a huge chance in stoppage time when Moore forced the keeper to parry and Clarke-Harris sliced the rebound wide.
Rotherham return to the serious business of the league at home to Charlton but their travel sickness goes on. Their run without a win on the road now stands at 28 games
How it unfolded: Read our live blog from the game
Huddersfield: Coleman, Malone, Whitehead, Lolley (Ince 81), J Williams, Depoitre, Quaner, Schindler (Billing 46), D Williams, Hefele, Palmer (Kachunga 74)
Millers: O’Donnell, Cummings, Purrington, Ajayi, Wood, Ball, Vaulks, Taylor, Forde, Ball (Clarke-Harris 64), Proctor (Moore 46)
Referee: Peter Bankes
Attendance: 8,290 (796 visitors)