Millers break their duck with superb victory ... on-the-whistle report: Rotherham United 2 Norwich City 1

ROTHERHAM United ended high-flying Norwich City's unbeaten record and put their first Championship victory of the season on the board at a packed AESSEAL New York Stadium this afternoon.
Rotherham United's Andre Green tests the Norwich City defence in the first half. Picture: Jim BrailsfordRotherham United's Andre Green tests the Norwich City defence in the first half. Picture: Jim Brailsford
Rotherham United's Andre Green tests the Norwich City defence in the first half. Picture: Jim Brailsford

Having taken a 2-0 interval lead, the Millers were left hanging on after the break but deserved the spoils for the quality of their first-half display.

A result that put them in 20th spot was a perfect way to go into the two-week international break and supporters gave them a standing ovation at the final whistle.

The match saw the debut of £1-million-plus striker Sam Nombe who came on during the second half.

Rotherham started well against opponents who began the game in third spot, with Dexter Lembikisa causing problems down the right, but it was Norwich who had the first real sight of goal, on 12 minutes, Gabriel firing off target from Dimitris Giannoulis' pull-back.

Christ Tiehi was high and wide at the other end three minutes later after winning a 50:50 challenge to set up the chance just outside the 18-yard area.

The Millers came agonisingly close to a 21st-minute opener when deft work from Fred Onyedinma saw him smack the post from a tight angle following great skill from Andre Green.

But the home side had to wait only a matter of seconds before going in front as Onyedinma's header from Cohen Bramall's long throw teed up young loanee Lembikisa who fired a stunning 20-yard volley beyond Angus Gunn into the corner of the net.

Viktor Johansson had to dive low and at full stretch to push away an Ashley Barnes effort on the half-hour mark but it was Rotherham who were on the front foot, continually raiding into the Canaries' half.

In the September sun, a large crowd warmed to what they were witnessing and the volume level grew even louder five minutes before the break when the lead was doubled.

The initial work was done by Ollie Rathbone, making his 100th Rotherham appearance and then Cafu applied his usual quality to a cross that Jordan Hugill glanced in against his former club.

The Millers had named record signing Nombe in their squad following his Thursday arrival and the new boy was given a warm reception by the home crowd as he warmed up before kick-off.

Manager Matt Taylor had selected the same side that had pushed leaders Leicester City so close a week earlier before succumbing to a late 2-1 defeat.

Rotherham needed to keep things tight in the early stages of the second half but conceded only five minutes after the restart as Jonathan Rowe made inroads on the left and Christian Fassnacht stabbed a low cross into the net.

Bramall crossed just too high for Green in front of the North Stand as Taylor's men broke and tried to halt the flow of the Canaries who were now going all out for an equaliser.

Another break saw Hugill race into Norwich territory and then inexplicably delay the pass that would have played in Rathbone for a shot.

As the visitors pressed again, only Johansson's firm hand prevented Jack Stacey squeezing in an attempt at the near post, then it was the turn of Rotherham as Rathbone's impish nutmeg and dash led to Cafu curling an 18-yarder just inches away from the target.

Nombe had come on to rousing appreciation, but Rotherham's bench was otherwise weak compared to that of City who made changes in the final 15 minutes in their bid for a leveller.

Przemyslaw Placheta fired wide for Norwich late on and still the Millers led as the contest entered seven minutes off added time.

They held out for victory: the reward for superb first-half attacking and superb second-half defending.

Rotherham (4-3-3): Viktor Johansson; Dexter Lembikisa, Cameron Humphreys, Tyler Blackett, Cohen Bramall; Cafu, Christ Tiehi, Ollie Rathbone; Andre Green (Sam Nombe 64), Jordan Hugill (Tom Eaves 83), Fred Onyedinma. Subs not used: Dillon Phillips, Sean Morrison, Hamish Douglas, Tolaji Bola, Arvin Appiah, Ciaran McGuckin.

Norwich (4-2-3-1): Angus Gunn; Jack Stacey, Shane Duffy, Ben Gibson, Dimitris Giannoulis (Sam McCallum 77); Gabriel Sara, Kenny McLean; Christian Fassnacht (Tony Springett 77), Ashley Barnes, Jonathan Rowe (Przemyslaw Placheta 64); Adam Idah (Liam Gibbs 77). Subs not used: George Long, Jon McCracken, Marcelino Nunez, Kellen Fisher, Jaden Warner.

Goals: Lembikisa 22, Hugill 40 (Rotherham); Fassnacht 50 (Norwich).

Referee: Sam Barrott (West Yorkshire).

Attendance: 11,066 (2,212).