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2014 Millers Matches Advent Calendar - Number 23

It’s Millers Time is paying tribute to a fantastic 2014 for Rotherham with a footballing advent calendar.

In each day of December, leading up to Christmas Day, we are looking back at a game from this year.

Behind window number 23 is arguably the greatest night at the New York Stadium.

Rotherham 3 Preston North End 1

There have been some great days at Rotherham's new home, but the play-off semi-final second led victory over Preston which sent them to Wembley and kept the promotion dream alive has to be the best.

The atmosphere, the realisation of what was on the horizon, the team showing a watching nation they were the real deal, the scenes at full-time– that all paled other successes at the Millers' new home into insignificance.

This game was as high-pressure as they come, all square from the first leg, and after three draws from their previous meetings earlier in the season a nail-biting evening looked on the cards.

That feeling exacerbated when Preston took a 16th-minute lead to take a 2-1 aggregate advantage.

It was fortuitous though as Paul Gallagher's free-kick evaded everyone and ended up in the far corner.

But the Millers needed only eight minutes to level and it came thanks to Ben Pringle's magical left foot as he whipped in a superb cross which Wes Thomas glanced home.

Just 10 minutes later the rampant hosts took the lead and again Pringle was the architect as he bent in another fine delivery which Lee Frecklington headed home from the edge of the area.

Adam Collin had a lucky escape on the stroke of half-time as he mis-handled John Welsh's shot, but breathed a sigh of relief when it dropped just wide of the post.

The Millers made the most of that let-off as they took a decisive two-goal lead midway through the second half.

The marauding James Tavernier advanced down the right and rolled the ball across for Kieran Agard, who slotted into the bottom corner for his 26th goal of the season and his last for the club.

The hosts were able to see it out, despite Preston hitting the post twice, and famous scenes followed at the end as the Millers' home campaign ended with a celebratory pitch invasion for the second successive year.

This time the job wasn't quite done just yet, though.

Rotherham: Collin, Tavernier, Morgan, Arnason, Skarz, Agard (O’Connor 89), Frecklington (Milsom 89), Smallwood, Pringle, Thomas (Vuckic 87), Revell

Attendance: 11,593

One to remember: The scenes of celebration at the end, with the players dancing in the directors' box. Promotion was just one game away.

One to forget: Adam Collin's handling error almost let Preston back into the game just before the break, but we're plucking at straws!

To find out what was behind window 22, click here!

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