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Jemson harbours happy Millers memories

There’s not many players who can claim to be in a club’s folklore after playing for them less than 20 times.

But Nigel Jemson can when it comes to Rotherham United.

The striker enjoyed a three-month loan spell at Millmoor in the second half of the 1995/96 season and wrote himself into the history books with his two goals in the Auto Windscreens Shield final, which gave the Millers victory over Shrewsbury Town on their first ever visit to Wembley.

Jemson scored a goal in either half to seal glory for John McGovern and Archie Gemmil’s side, the second time he had won a Wembley cup final following his antics for Nottingham Forest in the 1990 League Cup final, and it was the highlight of a memorable temporary switch from Notts County.

Those two goals contributed to a total tally of nine from his 19 appearances in a red and white shirt and after forging an impressive partnership with Shaun Goater and the Wembley success, which helped put the town on the map, there was real hope that Jemson would come to the club on a permanent basis in the summer.

But the club did not make a realistic offer to him and after leaving for Oxford, the Wembley side was broken up with Goater and skipper Matt Clarke sold.

It led to a horrific season for the Millers in 96/97 and a real sense of what could have been.
Jemson himself would have loved to stay.

"It’s a funny thing because I was at Notts County at the time and things weren’t happening for me and with the Forest connection of Archie Gemmill and John McGovern that persuaded me to go to Rotherham,” Jemson said.

"I had a great time there, even though I was only there for three months. 

"We had that success with the journey to Wembley, which put the town on the map because they hadn’t been there before.

"That was a great day out for all the players involved and for the town itself. 

"I really would have loved to have stayed but I felt the club didn’t make a great effort to sign me, whether they couldn’t afford it or not, but I loved my stay there. 

"The only thing is that I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye to the people at Rotherham. 

"I like to think that I proved my value while I was there. We did have that success. 

"It wasn’t just down to Nigel Jemson, okay, I scored those two goals but we had a good group of lads there who worked hard for each other and a good management team.”

Not many loan players are remembered as fondly as Jemson, perhaps only Carl Robinson, Nouha Dicko or James Tavernier in recent years, and the 45-year-old is happy to be in the folklore.

"For a loan player to play at Wembley and achieve that was fantastic,” he added. 

"I obviously played there before so I knew what was in front of me and I knew what the occasion meant. 

"Hopefully my bit of experience helped and it was important that we went there and put a bit of a show on and we did. 

"Whether everyone remembers me for that is up to the supporters. 

"It was a strange feeling when you weren’t signed for the club, you were just on loan but it is a time that I thoroughly enjoyed and is just a shame that it wasn’t for longer."

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