Freddie Ladapo and Michael Smith breathe life into Rotherham United’s survival bid with crucial win over QPR

Freddie Ladapo was the hero for Rotherham United as his second-half double gave the Millers renewed hope of avoiding relegation from the Championship.

Rotherham United's Freddie Ladapo (centre) celebrates scoring their side's equaliser against QPR (Picture: PA)

Paul Warne’s side, who are playing four games in nine days after suffering a raft of postponements due to Covid-19 earlier in the season, are back in action at the New York Stadium in less than 48 hours.

They will go into that crucial clash with Coventry City in fine heart after a 3-1 win over QPR on Tuesday night, despite falling behind to the in-form Londoners on 51 minutes when Lyndon Dykes thumped the ball home.

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But Ladapo, the 28-year-old striker who was playing non-league football five years ago, scored two goals in three minutes shortly after the hour to turn the game on its head and give Rotherham three priceless points.

Rotherham United's Freddie Ladapo celebrates his second goal (Picture: PA)

His equaliser was nicely taken, chesting down Jamie Lindsay’s ball in the box, turning on it and lashing it past Dieng.

Then Wes Harding’s through ball from deep in his own half spruing QPR’s high line and although Ladapo had acres of space and plenty of time to dwell on the size of the opportunity he was presented with, he calmly slotted it beyond the advancing Seny Dieng.

Any nerves were wiped away when substitute Michael Smith broke clear and beat Dieng from the edge of the area.

The victory sets up a huge game against Coventry on Thursday night with the third-bottom Millers occupying the final relegation spot and trailing fourth-bottom and currently safe Coventry by three points.

Rotherham also have two games in hand, a superior goal difference and a fresh air of optimisim after this emphatic turnaround.

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