Rotherham United 2 - 5 Huddersfield Town: JPT match report
Nov 10 2010 by Mel Booth, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
HUDDERSFIELD Town cruised into the northern section semi-finals of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy with an irresistible performance against Rotherham United.
After their FA cup frustrations Town got back on track by wiping out their League II rivals in uncompromising style.
Strikers Jordan Rhodes and Benik Afobe had to take much of the credit as both were sharp in front of goal and gave the Millers’ defence no rest, bagging two goals apiece.
But it was a solid team display with the midfield industrious and the defence, save for a couple of marking lapses, looking very comfortable and in command.
Town boss Lee Clark made a few adjustments to the side that had been held to a goalless draw at Cambridge United in the FA Cup.
Skipper Peter Clarke was rested to the bench, making way for Jamie McCombe in central defence, and Scott Arfield was restored to the midfield as Anthony Pilkington was left out of the squad as a precaution because of a tight hamstring. Gary Roberts made his very welcome return from injury as a substitute.
Town made the perfect start and with barely a minute on the clock a neat ball forward enabled Jordan Rhodes to make room for himself to get away a curling shot that gave Millers’ keeper Jamie Annerson no chance.
Town could have added to their tally 10 minutes later but Graham Carey’s effort from a free-kick was well blocked.
United hit back a minute later when Town’s defence failed to deal with a Nicky Law corner and Ryan Taylor was allowed time and space to rasp the loose ball into the net.
The Millers then lost defender Johnny Mullins to an injury and they were still trying to regain their shape when, on 24 minutes, Carey cut in from the left and caused consternation in the United defence before pulling the ball into the six yard box, where Rhodes was on hand to tap home his second goal.
And five minutes later Rhodes turned provider as his cross from the left found his strike partner Benik Afobe, and the teenage Arsenal loanee produced a textbook header to register his first goal for Town.
The Millers’ last win over Town came way back in 1992, with United having failed to record a victory in the last 11 meetings of the teams, but Law went close to putting them back in the contest on 33 minutes with a 20-yard shot that went narrowly wide.
But Town ended the half in the ascendancy and on the stroke of half time, Carey’s fine solo run finished with him forcing Annerson into a hurried save.