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Rotherham 3 Derby 3: Five things we learned

Rotherham produced what Neil Warnock described as the result of the season to battle back to a 3-3 draw against Derby.

The Millers were dead and buried at 3-0 down in the 83rd minute before a frantic finish saw them score three goals to earn the unlikeliest of points.

Here's five things we learned from the game.

Never leave a Rotherham match early

There must have been a large percentage of the home fans who thought the prospect of a cold beverage in the pub was better than having to watch the final 20 minutes against the Rams. After Tom Ince had made it 3-0 there was a real sense that the Rams could have gone on and made it embarrassing for the Millers, with little chance of the hosts getting back into the game. But any of those fans that did take the option of beating the rush and leaving early will be living to regret it as they missed out on one of the best finishes to a game in the club's history. Of course, they should know better than to leave before the final whistle as the Millers have made a trademark out of scoring late goals over the years. And this is proof that even the most pessimistic of situations should never have you leaving before full-time.

The Neil Warnock factor is in full swing

Warnock has rightly taken the plaudits for turning things around at Rotherham over the last fortnight as he has harvested a spirit in the squad that is now having a direct effect on results. The way they battled in the face of a second-half onslaught from Sheffield Wednesday, their determination to turn things around in the second half against Middlesbrough that was rewarded with a late winner and their most miraculous recovery against the Rams to steal a point from the most hopeless of positions. All three have come because of a spirit in the side which Warnock has instilled. That's what he was brought in to do and they are beginning to show the qualities that hallmarked the successful Rotherham teams of 2013-14 and Ronnie Moore's Championship side. Battling back from losing situations, scoring late goals and turning games on their head. It's very fair to say a result like this would not have been possible under Neil Redfearn.

The subs made an impact

It was more a freak occurrence rather than Warnock's tactical genius that was behind the late comeback for Rotherham, but the boss' substitutions did at least give his side a chance. Leon Best provided support to Danny Ward and improved the Millers even before his goalscoring antics while Joe Newell looked a lively threat and gave something that the hard-working but ineffective Matt Derbyshire didn't on the left. For much of the season the Millers have been hamstrung by a lack of options on the bench, but now they have shown on more than one occasion that they have game-changing presence on there.

Danny Ward is making his mark

Danny Ward has flattered to deceive for much of his time at Rotherham, only showing rare glimpses of the talent he possesses. However, in the last few months, and specifically under Warnock, Ward has come to the fore and quickly become a key player. He was Alan Lee like at times at Sheffield Wednesday last week and against Derby, although toiling in a lone role for much of the game, worked himself into the ground, so much so he got a 15/10 rating from his manager. When his chance came in the 83rd minute he finished coolly and then provided a piece of quality for the leveller with his inch-perfect cross for Best. Adding goals to his game is the real key aspect to him going on to the next level but two in the last four matches is a good start. And on the evidence of the last 10 minutes, he and Best can certainly play together and that is an exciting prospect for the Millers.

Fulham could be the ones to target

While Rotherham can hardly complain at other coupon-busting results given their own antics over the last three games, the only thing that has tempered this week has been MK Dons' form. Beating QPR and drawing with Charlton were hardly shock results, but their gritty draw at Hull on Saturday kept them out of the bottom three and ensured Rotherham stayed there, despite taking 10 points in four matches. For so long MK have been the subject of Rotherham's focus but such is their form at the minute, it may well be Fulham who are the likely ones to drop into the bottom three. The London club are on a wretched run of form, without a win in five, and are just a point above the Millers. Questions have to be asked over their lust for the fight and, although the quality of Ross McCormack may be enough to get them over the line, you'd think the desire of the Millers and MK might just give them the edge. Either way, it's going down to the wire.

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