Boxing Day frustration for the Millers ... on-the-whistle report: Rotherham United 2 Stoke City 2

Rotherham go in front in the 45th minute. Picture by Dave PoucherRotherham go in front in the 45th minute. Picture by Dave Poucher
Rotherham go in front in the 45th minute. Picture by Dave Poucher
ROTHERHAM United gave Stoke City two Christmas gifts as they failed to hold on for victory at a packed ASSEAL New York Stadium this afternoon.

The Millers were twice in front against the Potters in the Boxing Day clash but both times handed the visitors an easy way back into the Championship contest.

An error from Richard Wood set up Stoke's first equaliser and Lee Peltier's headed own goal late on cost the home side a much-needed three-point haul after only one win in their previous nine outings.

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The draw in the last New York match of 2022 leaves them in 19th spot, two places above the drop zone.

To add to Rotherham's frustration, key man Ben Wiles suffered a first-half injury and had to be carried away from proceedings.

On the plus side, it was a better performance than the ones that had seen them lose to Bristol City and West Bromwich Albion in their last two outings.

The visitors were the first team to threaten and Viktor Johansson was forced into a sixth-minute save as Tyrese Campbell broke down the left and tried to find the far corner.

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Soon afterwards, Wood was rounded by Liam Delap and the Stoke striker looked certain to score until Lee Peltier  came to the Millers' rescue with a superb block.

Rotherham were in the game yet not offering much of an attacking as the half-hour mark approached.

Wiles had been one of their better players but his afternoon came to an abrupt and worrying end when he landed awkwardly and had to be stretchered off in obvious discomfort.

Crucial interventions from Johansson and then Wood denied Campbell and Will Smallbone respectively before the home side had their first real chance at the other end as good work from Dan Barlaser freed Chiedozie Ogbene whose shot was deflected away by Phil Jagielka.

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Rotherham were improving and, as they made progress down both flanks, were starting to look like they were capable of making a breakthrough.

A sold-out New York duly came to life when Wes Harding ran in from the right just before the interval and his attempt on goal found the net with a large amount of help from the opposing player the ball hit on the way in.

Captain Wood had been recalled to the starting 11 after being dropped from the squad for last Saturday's loss at West Bromwich Albion and there was a start up front for Tom Eaves who was paired with Ogbene.

Harding moved from the backline to right wing-back as young Arsenal loanee Brooke Norton-Cuffy missed out the 18 while there were welcome returns to the bench after injury for two other wide men, Shane Ferguson and Peter Kioso.

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Ten minutes into the second half, the Millers had a huge let-off when Jacob Brown looked certain to convert a low cross at the far post but somehow put the ball wide.

However, an equaliser wasn't long in coming as Wood's under-hit back-pass let in Campbell who tapped in at the second attempt after an initial sharp stop from Johansson.

Rotherham rallied and regained the lead in the 71st minute when Ogbene fired in a cross from the left and substitute Conor Washington turned the ball over the line in front of the North Stand.

Their advantage didn't last long, though, as a headed own goal from Lee Peltier following a Stoke corner found the far top corner.

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It then needed a top-drawer Johansson save to deny Brown and ensure the Millers still had something to show for their efforts at the final whistle.

Rotherham (3-5-2): Viktor Johansson; Lee Peltier, Richard Wood, Cameron Humphreys; Wes Harding, Ben Wiles (Jamie Lindsay 30), Dan Barlaser, Ollie Rathbone, Cohen Bramall (Shane Ferguson 90); Tom Eaves (Conor Washington 65), Chiedozie Ogbene. Subs not used: Robbie Hemfrey, Jamie McCart, Hakeem Odoffin, Peter Kioso.

Stoke (3-5-2): Jack Bonham; Harry Souttar, Phil Jagielka, Morgan Fox; Jacob Brown, Jordan Thompson, Will Smallbone (Nick Powell 61), Lewis Baker, Josh Tymon; Tyrese Campbell, Liam Delap (Harry Clarke 74). Subs not used: Joe Bursik, Ben Wilmot, Gavin Kilkenny, Tariqe Fosu, Connor Taylor.

Goals: Harding 45, Washington 71 (Rotherham); Campbell 61, Peltier og 80 (Stoke).

Referee: David Webb (Lancashire).

Attendance: 11,517 (2,285).