Rotherham United 2 Norwich City 1: Debutant Jerry Yates helps Millers clinch priceless win in survival bid

Tom Adeyemi returned the Rotherham lead minutes after Norwich equalised
Tom Adeyemi returned the Rotherham lead minutes after Norwich equalised
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Rotherham United won for just the fourth time in 26 league games to revive hopes that their relegation from the Championship might not be a foregone conclusion after all.

Twelve points adrift of safety at the start of play, this hard-earned three points against 10-man Norwich City cut the gap to nine points, and while still a mountain to climb, there was enough spirit shown by the men in red to suggest that Rotherham will not sink without trace.

Jerry Yates was the hero, the 20-year-old from Doncaster marking his first start with the senior team with a goal after just eight minutes.

Yates, who had been on loan at Harrogate Town in the National League North last year, marked his milestone with a calm sidefoot finish after Tom Adeyemi had sprung the offside trap and pulled the ball back into the on-rushing striker’s path.

Adeyemi, who started his career with the Canaries, had the rare honour of calling himself a matchwinner for Rotherham this season after he flicked Joe Mattock’s left-wing cross beyond the reach of John Ruddy 10 minutes into the second half.

That goal came just four minutes after Cameron Jerome had stooped to head home Wes Hoolahan’s dinked cross, by which stage Norwich - despite being a man down - looked set to surge towards victory.

But the Canaries looked low on confidence themselves, their cause not helped by a selfish act of petulance from striker Nelson Oliveira, who after conceding a foul in the penalty area in the 19th minute, compounded the error by striking the already floored Kirk Broadfoot.

That made life a little easier for the Millers, though Norwich still carried a threat, and could have had an equaliser at the death when Steven Naismith ghosted in behind the defence only to muff his shot as goalkeeper Lewis Price came out to pressure him.

Kirk Broadfoot - who headed one off the line in the closing stages of the first half - Jon Taylor and Anthony Forde all missed chances to seal it but the Millers hung on to a victory greeted with enormous relief at the final whistle.