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Down with the Darlo

By: Rob Sedgwick
Date: 25/04/2010

WITH Barnet being a much closer game than Darlington for me, I decided to travel to Underhill on Saturday and join the promotion-chasing Rotherham fans in the away end at the far end of the Northern Line.

First of all it was a change to be surrounded by happy supporters, unlike at an average Town game this season. With Rotherham looking likely to get a play-off place they have had a good season and that was reflected by broad, Yorkshire grins on the fans faces.

For all that the Rotherham following at Barnet was definitely less than when Town were truly stuffed there a few months ago. It's criminal really that we're in the position we're in with our support.

There were a few familiar names in the two line-ups. Nick Fenton for Rotherham as well as Kevin Ellison (who looked about 50 from a distance) and Adam Le Fondre, both of whom have scored plenty against us. Barnet had veterans Paul Furlong and Micah Hyde in their line-up, plus dangerous winger Albert Adomah who I remember being impressed with on the two occasions I have seen him against Town at Underhill.

Rotherham looked the better side in the early stages and they hit the post with the 'keeper stranded when the score was 0-0. Barnet looked relatively happy when the score as 0-0, but once Rotherham took the lead on 34 mins it was a different matter. Rotherham's goal came direct from a Kevin Ellison free kick which went straight in without touching anyone. Furlong berated the linesman for not giving offside as he claimed the Rotherham attackers (who had looked offside but not touched the ball) had been interfering with play. He was lucky not to be booked as he practically squared up to the linesman.

With Town now winning, Barnet fans slouched against the barriers on their terraces hoping for an equaliser. All the atmosphere came from the away fans, with barely a murmur from the 1500 Barnet supporters (who even offered a prize for the noisiest home fan, probably the nation's easiest competition to win).

Apart from a brief flurry of pressure before half time, it was comfortable for the Millers in the opening period.

Town's winning scoreline got a big cheer from the Rotherham fans, who had been taunting Barnet that they were "going down with the Darlo". Thank you Rotherham!

After the break Rotherham should have sown the game up when Ellison missed a simple opening and somehow missed the target from close range. Barnet had the bulk of possession but it was Rotherham who looked the more dangerous in front of goal.

Barnet's one dangerman was right winger Albert Adomah, who can run at defenders for fun and has scored a few goals this season. Every time he got the ball he seemed to ghost past a couple of defenders. Fortunately he never quite managed to get the right cross in and when he did pull the trigger his shots were blocked.

Barnet piled forward in the last few minutes winning plenty of corners. They won a free kick right on the edge of the box towards the end of the game, which went over the bar thank God. Then there was the agony of 5 minutes of injury time, which actually lasted about 8 minutes because of stoppages, time wasting and substitutions.

Finally it was over and I applauded all the Rotherham players off the pitch like a true Miller. The final scores coming over the tannoy were heaven - all my bets had lost but the Mariners had won to keep the Great Escape dream alive.

Man of the Match was Kevin Ellison. A superb display, he gave everything and ran like someone ten years younger. Wish he played for us.

On this showing Barnet should win on Tuesday. Rotherham defended like their lives depended upon it. I just can't see Accrington having the same desire or determination, but you never know.

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