Merry Millers and a furious Ferguson

2 Apr


Burnley defender Michael Keane (number five) celebrates his last-minute equaliser with a fan

Michael Keane’s last-minute equaliser for Championship leaders Burnley at Brighton set the tone for a day of late drama in the Football League.

BBC Sport looks at five things things you may have missed on a day when League Two leaders Northampton Town moved to within three points of securing promotion.

The not-so-happy Valley


Jorge Teixeira has scored twice for Charlton this season

It has been a grim season for Charlton fans.

The Addicks have spent most of the campaign in the second tier’s relegation zone and angry supporters have staged several protests against unpopular Belgian owner Roland Duchatelet.

Saturday’s home game against Birmingham City was held up after just a few seconds as home supporters threw hundreds of small sponge footballs on to the pitch.

Groundstaff and players were forced to collect and remove the stressballs before the game could get under way in earnest.

Blues took the lead through Jon Toral before Johann Berg Gudmundsson levelled prior to half-time.

It looked like that would be it before Jorge Teixeira, seen above helping clear the playing field, scored a 94th-minute winner to keep Charlton’s slim survival hopes alive.

However, Fulham’s win against fellow strugglers MK Dons means the Addicks are still six points adrift of 21st place.

A picture paints 1,000 words

Leeds United<!–

Lee Frecklington (left) lays flat out on the ground after being fouled by Marco Silvestri, who is sent off as Giuseppe Bellusci (far right) realises goalkeeping duties are about to be thrust upon him

Rotherham v Leeds just about had it all.

Lee Frecklington, a boyhood Leeds fan, gave the Millers a first-half lead when he scored from close range.

The hosts were then reduced to 10 men after the break when Matt Derbyshire saw red for an elbow on Leeds full-back Gaetano Berardi.

Leeds substitute Luke Murphy’s late deflected strike looked to have won his side a share of the spoils before Leeds keeper Marco Silvestri was sent off for upending Frecklington in the box.

With all three subs used, defender Giuseppe Bellusci took the gloves and jersey but was unable to prevent Greg Halford’s penalty earning Rotherham a fifth win in six.

Bees stung after 54 seconds

Shaun Miller<!–

Shaun Miller failed to score in his first nine appearances for Morecambe but now has 15 goals in 27 games

Shaun Miller didn’t mess about for Morecambe today.

The former Crewe and Sheffield United man scored his 14th goal of the season after just 54 seconds of his side’s 4-2 win over Barnet.

Shaun Beeley’s long ball beat the Bees defence and Miller kept his composure to lob the ball over visiting goalkeeper Graham Stack.

Not one to rest on his laurels, Miller was at it again after just eight minutes, slotting home from the spot after Stack had fouled him in the area.

Unfortunately there would be no matchball to remember the game by as a succession of chances came and went for the 28-year-old.

Fergie time strikes back

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson built up something of a reputation for seeing his team pull off winners in time added on.

This was best exemplified when the Red Devils scored twice in injury time to beat Bayern Munich 2-1 in the 1999 Champions League final.

A mere 17 years later his son Darren is enduring a far more difficult time in charge of League One strugglers Doncaster Rovers.

Last week he was moved to call his team “a complete embarrassment” after their 4-1 defeat at lowly Colchester.

They looked like they would pick up a much-needed three points at Rochdale before Niall Canavan’s 96th minute goal made it 2-2.

“Somehow the referee found another 90 seconds to add on,” Ferguson told BCC Radio Sheffield.

“It’s just the way it is going at the moment for whatever reason. The big man isn’t shining on us.

“The point is no consolation because it’s a win that we needed and the mood in the dressing room is very low.”

‘That’s just wrong in my opinion’

Brian McDermott<!–

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McDermott defends Vydra after Bolton win

Reading’s 1-0 win at Bolton meant the Royals are mathematically assured of their place in the Championship next season.

BBC Radio Berkshire reporter Tim Dellor asked boss Brian McDermott about the poor form of striker Matej Vydra following the game, after the on-loan Watford man missed a penalty in the match.

The Czech is goalless in the Championship since 28 November but it’s fair to say Dellor and McDermott see his contribution a little differently to one another.

Here’s the transcript of their exchange on the subject of Vydra’s poor form:

Tim Dellor: “It’s an interesting spin because any way you look at it Vydra has not scored for you in the Championship yet. If you look at the number of points that are won by Reading when he is on the pitch it is incredible the disparity between when he is on the pitch and off the pitch. I think quite a lot of people, including myself, are surprised you keep picking him each week.”

Brian McDermott: “Well there you go. Life is full of surprises, Tim.”

TD: “It is. Are you not concerned about his complete lack of form in front of goal? I mean his misses today were unbelievable.”

BM: “I think you’re being really quite harsh on him.”

TD: “I have no doubt I’m being harsh on him but…”

BM: “No, I actually think he is working his socks off for the team and I am asking him to work his socks off. He has had opportunities and he has not scored today but there’s no way in a million years I’m going to make comments about Matej Vydra that are detrimental to him. He’s a great lad, he works his socks off, I see him everyday in training so… I am never going to single anybody out like that because it’s just wrong in my opinion.”

TD: “For you because you are the coach…”

BM: “No, it’s just totally wrong.”

TD: “Not wrong from me though because I’m just trying…”

BM: “No Tim, you can ask whatever question you like and I have to answer it. You are entitled to ask whatever question you like but I have got so much respect for Matej Vydra.”

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