LIVE: FULL-TIME: PETERBOROUGH UNITED 2, ROTHERHAM UNITED 1: Posh deliver a superb performance to knock Rotherham United off the top of the table
Peterborough United claimed a superb 2-1 win over League One leaders Rotherham United to shoot up to fifth place at the Weston Homes Stadium today (January 25).
And this was no fluke. Posh played all the football against a physical, powerful outfit to record a second straight home win, one that knocked the Millers off the top.
This was a far different game to the one at the New York Stadium last month when Posh were battered 4-0.
Manager Darren Ferguson named an unchanged side after their own 4-0 win over Wycombe on Tuesday night and they rewarded his faith by scoring twice in the opening 23 minutes through top scorer Ivan Toney and on-loan forward Sammie Szmodics, and, even though the visitors pulled a goal back 10 minutes before the break, Posh ‘keeper Christy Pym was forced into just one tricky save after the break.
Posh could have had more goals themselves in a second-half that lasted 56 minutes due to an injury to an assistant referee.
Toney saw a diving header from Jack Taylor’s fine cross well saved by Rotherham ‘keeper Daniel Iverson and Siriki Dembele, who was outstanding, shooting wide when well placed.
Rotherham threw a lot of crosses and bodies into the area in the latter stages, but Posh held firm with Pym making one fine save to keep out Michael Smith’s header.
Posh opened the scoring in the second minute from their first attack when Dembele’s pace enabled him to escape down the left. His cross found Toney who scored from a difficult angle.
Posh played some terrific football against powerful opponents and added a second goal through Szmodics in the 23rd minute after a high-quality move.
Goalkeeper Pym started it, Frankie Kent and Reece Brown carried it on, and then Dan Butler played a one-two with Jack Taylor before releasing Szmodics with a superb pass. The on-loan Bristol City forward finished superbly past a stranded Iverson.
Rotherham were struggling to get going, but found a way back into the game from a 35th-minute corner conceded when Pym tipped a Hakeeb Adelakun shot over the bar.
Posh let Michael Ihiekwe run free at the far post and he volleyed Dan Barlaser’s corner into the roof of the net.
The goal gave the visitors some impetus, but Posh held firm to the break.
And then largely dictated the game in the second-half to complete back-to-back wins against the top two in League One.
Posh: Christy Pym: Nathan Thompson, Mark Beevers, Frankie Kent: Joe Ward (sub Rhys Bennett, 90 + 2 mins), Dan Butler, Reece Brown (sub Josh Knight, 68 mins), Jack Taylor, Sammie Szmodics, Ivan Toney, Siriki Dembele (sub Ricky-Jade Jones, 83 mins).
Unused substitutes: Aaron Chapman, Mo Eisa, Niall Mason, George Boyd.
Rotherham: Daniel Iverson, Ben Wiles (sub Jerry Yates, 90 + 2 mins), , Joe Mattock, Michael Ikhiewe, Dan Barlaser, Matt Olosunde (sub Shaun MacDonald, 90 + 3 mins), Hakeeb Adelakun (sub Julien Lamy, 83 mins), Chedozie Ogbene, Freddie Ladapo, Michael Smith.
Unused substitutes: Laurence Bilboe, Jamie Lindsay, Trevor Clarke, Jake Hastie.
Goals: Posh - Toney (3 mins), Szmodics (23 mins).
Rotherham - Ihiekwe (35 mins).
Cautions: Posh - Szmodics (foul).
Rotherham - Wiles (foul).
Referee: Scott Oldham 8
Attendance: 7,495 (1,476 Rotherham).