Rotherham United 2 Bristol City 1: Millers rack up triple via Tavernier’s double

James Tavernier’s brace of goals continued Rotherham United’s bid for promotion, this win over Bristol City their third in a week.

Visiting manager Steve Cotterill’s first home game back in December saw the Millers win by the same scoreline as here, but he has helped lift the club out of the relegation zone and into a mid-table safety.

However, the Millers – in first place in the recent form table with Bristol City second – quickly took the lead with a fine goal in the second minute.

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Ben Pringle’s free-kick from the right was headed away by Nyron Nosworthy only as far as Tavernier, whose fulminating right-footed shot from 30 yards sped beyond Frank Fielding.

Rotherham radiated confidence and the visitors were forced to defend frantically to keep the deficit at one goal by the interval. Within three minutes of the restart their resilience was rewarded as they drew level, Marvin Elliott gaining possession deep and in a wide position where, unperturbed, he arrowed a 20-yard shot inside the far post.

Rotherham’s character surfaced as they used the setback as incentive to attack again with verve and the Millers restored their lead on the hour.

Goalkeeper Fielding, in clearing from his hands, must have carried the ball outside his area and a linesman spotted the offence.

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Tavernier eased the free-kick high to the right of Fielding’s outstretched left hand for what proved to be the winning goal.

Rotherham United: Collin, Tavernier, Arnason, Morgan, Skarz, Adams (Milsom 88), Frecklington, Smallwood, Pringle (Vuckic 81), Revell (Davis 89), Agard. Unused substitutes: Shearer, O’Connor, Addison, Hitchcock.

Bristol City: Fielding, Williams, Osborne, Nosworthy, Wagstaff, Gillett, Emmanuel-Thomas (Pack 83), Wade Elliott, Cunningham (El-Abd 84), Paterson (Barnett 84), Baldock. Unused substitutes: Moloney, Pearson, Burns, Richards.

Referee: G Ward (Surrey).