BEATEN but not bowed – that was the message from Neil Redfearn following Rotherham United’s narrow loss to Middlesbrough.
The rock-bottom Millers ended an arduous quartet of games against a number of the Championship’s heavyweights with a 1-0 defeat on Teesside, in a much-improved showing following the 3-0 weekend loss at Derby County.
For Redfearn, still awaiting his first win as Millers chief, there was encouragement all the same, while being mindful that his major priority is bringing in some attacking options to give his side a much-needed cutting edge.
The former Leeds United head coach is busy working on getting some newcomers over the line before Saturday’s home game with Ipswich Town – and he remains confident in that respect.
He said: “I am hopeful. We are getting people very very close. But I don’t want to keep saying it, I want to get people in.
“We are striving to do the right things and the whole club realises what we need to do and we are trying to do that.”
On his side’s Riverside display, he added: “There were signs of improvement and at times we played really well.
“I was not down with the performance.
“It is not against the Midldesbrough’s of this world where we need to pick up points, it’s the other games as this top six is by far and away ahead of the rest of this Championship.”
For fourth-placed Boro, it was a night when they failed to sparkle and got the job done, although Aitor Karanka was quick to praise the goalscoring input of £5m summer signing Stewart Downing – who is hitting pristine form after a slow star ton his Teesside return.
On Downing, whose early goal gave Boro the spoils, he said: “I said it was going to be difficult for him and it took time but fortunately he is one of the best in the division, if not the best.”