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Rotherham 2 Brighton 0: Five things we learned

Rotherham were the first side to beat Brighton at home this season as they put in a superb performance to win 2-0.

Goals in either half from Danny Ward and Matt Derbyshire were the difference and the three points gives them breathing space at the bottom of the table.

Here are five things we learned from the game.

The Millers have found the winning formula at home

They say it's always darkest before dawn and that seems to be the case for Rotherham's form after the nadir of Ipswich, particularly at home. Since that harrowing afternoon against Mick McCarthy's side, the Millers have won four of their last five games at New York Stadium and it is turning into a real stronghold for them. With the crowd behind them, Neil Redfearn's men are playing in a high-tempo, attacking and energetic way which teams are struggling to deal with. Hull, seen off. Bolton, blown away. Brighton, outplayed. Their last three games at home have returned an aggregate of 8-0 and it is now beginning to form the foundations of a move up the table.

Paul Green has real character

Talking of that Ipswich game, nobody had a more disappointing game than Paul Green. After he made two errors which led to goals in the opening quarter, he was then booed by a section of fans every time he touched the ball and was withdrawn at half-time. His Millers career was staring down the barrel and looked to be over. But he has shown his character and quality to fightback and is now back in the starting XI, impressing in both of the last two games. Against Brighton he put in an assured display, using the ball well and being a help at both ends of the pitch. 

King Kirk

Kirk Broadfoot put in a defensive performance that was a mouth-watering combination of Chris Swailes, Martin McIntosh, Rio Ferdinand and Bobby Moore. The Scot, who is enjoying the best spell of his Millers career, was Swailes-like in his relentless winning of headers, particularly against Bobby Zamora, putting his head where it hurts when it matteres. The way he was on the ball was similar to both McIntosh and Ferdinand and how he brought the ball out of defence was particularly reminiscent of the England defender in his prime. And then there was the leadership, inspiring others with his outstanding performance. Without wanting to overstate things, Broadfoot's showing was arguably the best individual display of the season for the Millers.

History repeating?

It was a cold January midweek in 2015 that Matt Derbyshire ended a drought and then went on a goalscoring run that effectively kept the Millers up. And the striker, who was making his first start since November, got on the scoresheet against Brighton and showed enough to suggest a partnership with Danny Ward is worth pursuing. Just over 18 months into his Rotherham career you know what you're going to get with Derbyshire. He was his usual bustling self, working hard across the back line and his ability to run the channels is something that no other Millers striker can offer to that standard. He was rewarded with a goal late on and if it can have the same effect as the one against Bolton last year did, then it could be like having a new signing.

The best time to score

Rotherham know more than any other side in the division how bad it is to concede on the stroke of half-time. They have done it eight times after all. But the boot was on the other foot against Brighton as they scored in the 45th minute and it proved decisive. It looked like a first half of Millers domination was going to go unrewarded until Ward struck that volley and had it been 0-0 at half-time then, with the Seagulls improving after the break, who knows what would have happened. Chris Hughton admitted after the game that it changed his half-time team-talk. It was so important - against a team that has lost its ability to score - to get the vital breakthrough and it provided the Millers with a platform to go on and win the game.

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