Blackpool 0 Rotherham United 0: Millers take a valuable point but it could have been better

Rotherham United claimed a valuable point at Bloomfield Road but after a strong second-half performance, they will be thinking it should have been more.

Chiedozie Ogbene hit the crossbar in stoppage time and Cohen Bramall clipped an upright at a free-kick but clear-cut chances were too scarce in a second half where the visitors made the running.

The Millers had more than held their own against Blackburn Rovers, Watford and Sheffield United but a match against relegation strugglers Blackpool put a bit more emphasis on them to take the running.

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In the second half they did, with Ollie Rathbone at the heart of everything good they did but even after introducing mercurial former Barnsley loanee from Quina from the bench, they were too often unable to find the final pass that created copper-bottom chances.

MISSED OPPORTUNITY: Chiedozie Ogbene hit the crossbar in stoppage timeMISSED OPPORTUNITY: Chiedozie Ogbene hit the crossbar in stoppage time
MISSED OPPORTUNITY: Chiedozie Ogbene hit the crossbar in stoppage time

And so they had to settle for a 0-0 draw which improves their chances of being in next season's Championship, but perhaps not as much as they might like.

When you travel to a game hosted by a Mick McCarthy team fighting relegation, you do not show up expecting a classic and so it proved in the first half. But the Millers improved considerably after the break.

For Matt Taylor's side in particular, there was more to take delight in defensively than going forward, just as against Sheffield United the previous weekend.

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Lee Peltier and Grant Hall were quick to show they had carried over his form from that game, the right-back putting a great tackle in on CJ Hamilton to concede a corner the central defender headed away.

Blackpool took the initiative early on but were not able to do much with it, Josh Bowler's shot hitting traffic when he cut inside and Sonny Carey producing a weak finish when the ball fell to him.

Bowler would also shoot wide under pressure.

It was still more than Rotherham could manage, though they had enough moments to give their sold-out away allocation hope, usually down their side.

Cameron Humphreys played a great ball to Bramall, in for the injured Leo Hjelde, but the cross was cut out.

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Tarique Fosu brilliantly wriggled himself into a bit of space but overhit his pass to Hakeem Odoffin.

Conor Coventry hit a rising ball over and when Rathbone pounced on a defensive mistake, he found Jordan Thorniley a backstop he could not beat.

So the game settled into a bit of a slumber until a couple of Rotherham counter-attacks and a disallowed Blackpool with half-time approaching gave hope for the second half.

Rathbone took a long throw and exchanged passes with Ogbene. He kept his concentration as Rotherham unsuccessfully appealed for a penalty and had a shot blocked.

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The Millers ought to have released their captain on a counter-attack shortly after but Fosu's pass was too heavy.

But the half ended with a warning as Jerry Yates was flagged offside heading a cross into the net against his old club.

It was Rotherham who were the stronger after the break, even with Yates nodding a lovely Carey cross wide after 50 minutes.

If Rathbone was conducting the second half, Bramall was providing good support down the left. He grazed the woodworrk from a free-kick the midfielder won following a good Odoffin tackle.

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Odoffin would also produce a header on the run from Bramall's cross but could only direct it at Chris Maxwell.

It was not just getting forward from Bramall, either, showing great speed to snuff out a Carey run.

When Rathbone did well to get a 69th-minute cross in, Jordan Hugill chested it but was unable to snaffle the chance. Maxwell did well to dive right and save from Rathbone.

Not that Blackpool did not have moments too, with Hall doing well to block a shot and a dangerous Morgan Rogers cross just missing a touch.

It took until the 91st minute for the real drama.

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Johansson had already done well to come off his line earlier in the half and he did so again when Yates latched onto Hall’s underhit header. Cameron Humphreys blocked a shot.

Rotherham counter-attacked and Ogbene smashed his shot against the bar.

Blackpool: Maxwell; Lyons, Connolly, Thorniley, Husband; Trybull (Patino 23); Bowler, Carey, Dougall, Hamilton (Rogers 64); Yates.

Unused substitutes: Gabriel, Thompson, Poveda, Grimshaw, Apter.

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Rotherham United: Johansson; Peltier, Hall, Humphreys, Bramall; Coventry, Odoffin (Quina 76), Rathbone; Ogbene, Hugill (Eaves 69), Fosu.

Unused substitutes: Vickers, Wright, Harding, Ferguson, Washington.

Referee: J Smith