ROTHERHAM United manager Paul Warne split his squad in half as pre-season preparations stepped up a notch tonight.
Half of the squad travelled to Gainsborough, where they were overseen by Warne and coach Matt Hamshaw, while the other half made the trip to the Impact Arena to face Afreton, under the stewardship of assistant boss Richie Barker and goalkeeper coach Mike Pollitt.
Here's how both games panned out:
Alfreton 0 Millers 2
ASSISTANt boss Richie Barker took charge of Rotherham United as his side ran out clear winners at the Impact Arena.
The Millers took the lead after just 16 minutes when good work from Alex Bray released David Ball to net his fifth goal of pre-season.
Jon Taylor doubled the lead later in the first when Jonson Clarke-Harris fed Bray, who squared for the Liverpudlian to side-foot home..
The second half produced more chances for the Millers.
Joe Mattock had a shot well saved before Ryan Williams went close with a curling effort.
Richie Barker threw on youngster Kuda Muskwe, Ben Wiles, Lewis Murr, Jack Osbourne and Akeem Hinds late in the second half, while forgotten defender Aymen Beliad replaced Bray at half time.
Team vs Alfreton: Bilboe; Fisher, Ajayi, Do Ball, Mattock; Taylor, Potter, Williams, Bray; Da Ball; Clarke-Harris
Gainsborough 0 Millers 1
JAMIE Proctor’s first-half strike handed Rotherham United a 1-0 win in a good pre-season workout at Gainsborough Trinity.
The summer signing’s fourth goal in four games separated the sides at Northolme in front of manager Paul Warne.
The Millers had a careless start and were lucky not to fall behind when Ben Purrington lost the ball and Richard O’Donnell had to stand tall to block Bradley Wells’ shot.
Gainsborough, managed by Dave Frecklington, uncle of Millers ace Lee, were plucky opponents but Rotherham improved as the half wore on and took the lead on 30 minutes when Proctor tucked in from close range after an initial foray from Jamie Yates.
Kieffer Moore, paired with Proctor up front, and Will Vaulks went close to increasing the lead but the non-leaguers dug in.
Warne gave run-outs to Mason Warren, Darnell Bailey-King and Joshua Kayode in the second half and the Millers remain relatively untroubled while only rarely looking like nailing a second goal. Goalkeeper Richard Walton showed sharp reflexes to keep out Joe Newell’s inswinging free-kick but it took a decent block from Vaulks to keep out Jack McGovern’s shot beford the final whistle sounded.
Team vs Gainsborough: O’Donnell; Emmanuel, Ihiekwe, Wood, Purrington; Forde, Vaulks, Newell, Yates; Proctor, Moore.
The Millers host local rivals Sheffield United at the AESSEAL New York Stadium on Friday, 7.45pm kick off.