Rotherham United 2 Preston North End 1 - Match report as PNE's unbeaten away record comes to an end

Preston North End saw their unbeaten away run come to an end with defeat against Rotherham United at the New York Stadium.

By Dave Seddon
Saturday, 7th November 2020, 5:21 pm
Updated Saturday, 7th November 2020, 5:38 pm
Preston North End's Darnell Fisher, Paul Huntington and Ryan Ledson after conceding the first goal
Preston North End's Darnell Fisher, Paul Huntington and Ryan Ledson after conceding the first goal

It was game PNE threw away in many respects, with them having left with a draw.

After falling behind to Richard Wood's goal early in the second half, Ryan Ledson fired them level in the 80th minute with his first ever Preston goal.

They were in the ascendancy at that stage but allowed Rotherham to hit their winner six minutes later on the counter-attack when Brad Potts gave away the ball with a sloppy pass

PNE midfielder Ryan Ledson battles for possession against Rotherham

The Millers broke from their own half, with substitute Matt Crooks supplying the finish.

Even after that North End could have salvaged a draw, Jayden Stockley hitting the post with a header.

Defeat followed a draw and four successive wins on the road, the manner of this reverse no disappointing.

North End, unchanged from last Wednesday's 3-0 win at Reading, had found it hard to get into the game in the first half.

Ryan Ledson scores Preston's equaliser at Rotherham

There was little pattern to the game, Rotherham perhaps slightly on top in terms of getting forward and creating chances.

An early shot from Kieran Sadlier clipped off Joe Rafferty and was blocked by Jordan Storey.

Jamie Lindsay sliced an effort well wide, while Paul Huntington's sliding block took the sting off Kyle Vassell's shot and allowed Declan Rudd to collect the loose ball.

PNE's one decent chance of the first period was created by Emil Riis, the striker bringing down a clearance from the Preston defence and cleverly creating space to move into.

His ball across the face of the box picked out the run of Daniel Johnson who controlled but put his shot too close to goalkeeper Viktor Johannson who saved with his legs.

When Huntington grappled Wood to the floor it gave the home side a free-kick five yards outside the box.

Vassell hit the free-kick with plenty of power behind it, Rudd diving to his left to get both hands to the ball and push it away.

North End made a poor start to the second half and should have fallen behind before they actually did.

In the 52nd minute, Ben Wiles got past Alan Browne - covering in the right-back position while Darnell Fisher was off the pitch having treatment - and pulled a low cross into the middle which Freddie Ladapo side-footed wide from inside the six-yard box.

But two minutes later Rotherham took the lead. Michael Ihiekwe lifted a free-kick from the inside right channel deep to the far post, it was nodded back and Wood shot home.

PNE made a double change just before the hour, Stockley and Tom Barkhuizen replacing Riis and Scott Sinclair.

The two substitutes combined to give North End a decent shout for a penalty in the 69th minute.

Stockley flicked on a high ball to release Barkhuizen behind the Rotherham back line and into the box.

Goalkeeper Viktor Johansson came racing forward to challenge Barkhuizen, the pair colliding as Barkhuizen brought the ball down.

Referee Andy Davies waved play on, deciding the keeper had got a touch on the ball.

North End equalised in the 80th minute, substitute Paul Gallagher lifting a corner from the right into the box.

It was headed clear by the home defence but the ball fell to Ledson just outside the box, the midfielder working the ball on to his right foot before shooting low into the bottom corner.

Within six minutes though, Rotherham regained the lead and it was very much PNE shooting themselves in the foot.

North End were on the attack in the hosts' half when Potts' pass intended for Rafferty didn't have enough on it and was intercepted by Matt Olosunde.

As the right-back started a gallop up field, Rafferty tried to bring him down and missed, Olosunde powering through the Preston half and into the box where his pass picked out Crooks who stroked a shot past Rudd.

The woodwork denied PNE an equaliser in the 88th minute, Gallagher's cross met by Stockley who looped a header over the keeper but saw it bounce back off the post.

Rotherham: Johansson, Olosunde (MacDonald 88), Ihiekwe, Wood, Harding, Sadlier (Jozefzoon,23), Barlaser, Lindsay, Wiles, Vassell (Crooks 67), Ladapo. Subs (not used): Hirst, Miller, Smith, Vickers.

PNE: Rudd, Fisher (Gallagher 75), Huntington, Storey, Rafferty, Ledson, Sinclair (Barkhuizen 59), Browne, Johnson, Potts, Riis (Stockley 59). Subs (not used): Earl, Harrop, Maguire, Ripley.

Referee: Andy Davies (Hampshire)

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