Rotherham United 1 (Hall 76)
Despite dominating play, especially in the second-half, Wolves couldn’t break down a resilient Rotherham defence and they paid the price when substitute Ryan Hall scrambled home a 76th minute winner.
Kenny Jackett named the team that had beaten Norwich on the opening day of the campaign and it included Nouha Dicko who was returning to the New York Stadium where he spent a spell on loan from Wigan before his move to Molineux.
Rotherham kicked-off attacking the end of the ground that housed around 1,600 travelling supporters. Inside the first few seconds there were home appeals for a penalty when Kari Amason’s long-throw struck Matt Doherty but the referee was well placed and he ruled that if the ball had struck the defender’s arm, it was accidental.
Bakary Sako’s lifted a free-kick into the box from 30-yards but the ball was headed clear and when Ben Pringle was presented with a similar opportunity at the other end, Carl Ikeme got down to claim in a crowded box.
Adam Collin punched clear an inswinging Sako corner then, after he had lost control of the ball following Rajiv van La Parra’s centre, the keeper redeemed himself by twice blocking Sako’s attempts to find the back of the net.
In the 20th minute The Millers were a fraction away from taking the lead as Paul Taylor turned smartly into the box and fired over Ikeme only to see the ball bounce back off the crossbar before being cleared.
Sako shot narrowly over the Rotherham bar before Danny Batth was shown the yellow card after an aerial challenge on Paul Green. He was followed into the book by Craig Morgan whose tackle on Dicko left the striker holding his back after he had recovered his feet.
In the 33rd minute Collin delayed his clearance and Dicko raced in to take possession. Although his route to goal was blocked by the keeper, he squared the ball to Van La Parra and his shot was pushed away by Colin who had raced back into his six-yard box.
Two more bookings followed – Kirk Broadfoot for clattering into Scott Golbourne and then, after he had recovered, the Wolves defender saw yellow too for not leaving the field quickly enough after receiving treatment.
Three minutes before the break, Dicko lost his marker and from 30-yards he chipped the keeper but his effort drifted no more than a foot wide on the empty net.
Half-Time: Millers 0 Wolves 0
Dave Edwards took advantage over a clever turn by Dicko to race down the right flank but the midfielder’s low cross travelled through the goalmouth and to the far side with no-one able to apply a touch.
A low Sako cross ran through to Van La Parra but, before he could turn, a defender booted the ball against him and it rolled back into the grateful arms of Collin.
Green fouled Kevin McDonald some 25-yards out in a central position. It didn’t need two guesses as to who would take the kick but Sako’s effort was deflected off the wall and the ball drifted just wide with Collin flatfooted in the middle of his goal. Two Sako corners that followed brought no joy for the fans behind the goal.
There was another chance as Wanderers continued to pour forward after Collin had flapped at a Golbourne centre. The ball dropped for Doherty just inside the box and his shot took a hefty deflection as it went over the bar for yet another unproductive corner.
Sako was inches too high with a free-kick from 22-yards after Van La Parra had been hauled down by Pringle. Doherty then ran onto a return pass from Van La Parra only to be tripped by Pringle who was booked for his troubles.
But, in the 76th minute, Matt Derbyshire broke away to win a corner from which United grabbed the winning goal which was completely against the run of play. Pringle took the kick and Morgan got in a powerful header that was brilliantly pushed out by Ikeme. Edwards attempted to hook the ball clear but, unfortunately, it bounced off Hall's outstretched boot and rebounded back into the net.
Wolves immediately made a double change with James Henry and Michael Jacobs replacing Sako and Van La Parra respectively.
With Sako off the field it was Henry’s turn to go close with a free-kick after Doherty had been fouled but the ball just cleared the angle.
Henry and Dicko both tried to get on the end of a McDonald cross but were crowded out and then, deep into stoppage time, Ikeme went up for a corner but he was thwarted by Collin who clung on to Henry’s flag-kick to the massive relief of the home supporters.
Millers: Collin, Skarz, Amason, Broadfoot, Frecklington, Revell, Green, Pringle, Morgan (capt), Swift (Hall 45) (Agard 78), Taylor (Derbyshire 62).
Unused subs: Loach, Wood, Bowery, Tidser.
Bookings: Morgan (31 – foul), Broadfoot (38 – foul), Pringle (74 – foul).
Wolves: Ikeme, Doherty, Golbourne, Evans, Batth (capt), Stearman, Van La Parra (Jacobs 77), Edwards, Dicko, McDonald, Sako (Henry 77).
Unused subs: McCarey, Clarke, Ricketts, McAlinden, Ebanks-Landell.
Bookings: Batth (26 – foul), Golbourne (39 – not leaving field of play after treatment).
Referee: G. Salisbury.
Attendance: 10,752 (1,650 away supporters).
Derby County Under 18s 1 Wolves 2 (Upton, Ronan)