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1996 Auto Windscreens Shield final - Rotherham 2 Shrewsbury 1: Five things we learned

Rotherham's first-ever trip to Wembley ended in glory as they lifted the Auto Windscreens Shield following a 2-1 win over Shrewsbury.

Cheered on by around 20,000 Millers fans, Nigel Jemson was the hero as a goal in either half sent Archie Gemmill and John McGovern's side into club folklore.

Here's five things we learned from the game.

Nigel Jemson loves Wembley

The Millers knew what they were getting when they brought Jemson in on loan two months ago and he again proved he likes it on the big stage with his goalscoring heroics. Six years ago when he was only 20, the striker announced himself with the winning goal in the League Cup final at the national stadium, sending Nottingham Forest to a 1-0 win over Oldham Athletic. And Jemson again found his groove on under the Twin Towers as he superbly stroked the Millers into the lead in the 20th minute before doubling the advantage by rolling the ball into an empty net just before the hour-mark. He could easily have had two more, but as it was his brace proved decisive and he has written himself into the club's history books. The on-loan Notts County man probably wishes he could play at Wembley every week.

A young Millers team weren't fazed

While Jemson has previous for turning it on at Wembley, he was the only man in the Millers dressing room who had played at the famous ground before the clash with Shrewsbury, so how those debutants were going to react was up in the air. They could quite easily have buckled under the spotlight on such an occasion, but their reaction was the polar opposite - they thrived on the big stage. Perhaps being helped by a vociferous support who were situated at the tunnel end of the ground, the Millers settled quickly and soon took control of the game early on, showing no signs of stage fright. That quick start allowed them to take a 20th-minute lead, laying the foundations for the superb win.

It was nervier than it should have been

For 80 minutes this was a cakewalk for the Millers. 2-0 up and coasting, the red flags were flying and the players were probably beginning to prepare for their victory walk up the 39 steps up to collect their trophy from Geoff Hurst. But then Mark Taylor changed the complexion of the game when he slotted home from close range in the 81st minute, leading to a few heart-stopping moments for the Millers as Shrewsbury threw everything forward in search of an equaliser. Gemmill and McGovern's men had no one else to blame but themselves for their predicament in the final 10 minutes, though, as a string of missed chances saw them fail to put the game to bed. Jemson could easily have had two more, Shaun Goater was denied in the first half while the Millers' final ball ruined several promising positions. Luckily, the defence, marshalled by Ian Breckin and Neil Richardson held firm.

Jemson and Goater are a match made in heaven

With every game that goes by, the Jemson-Goater partnership in attack gets better and it again thrived against the Shrews. The pace and power of Goater and the intelligence and quality of Jemson is proving a match made in heaven for the Millers and the two worked wonderfully well together at Wembley. Jemson will take the plaudits with his two goals but the Bermudan proved just as troublesome for the Shrewsbury defence. It was his fine play that created his strike partner's opener, with some impressive skill in the box and he was a threat throughout, unlucky not to score in the first half after some great movement in the box. Sometimes a strike partnership just clicks and this looks to be the case between these two. If both players are still at the club next season, then an exciting time could be on the cards.

The Millers have a great chance to kick-on 

Winning at Wembley in front of 20,000 fans with a young, exciting side has presented Rotherham with a real platform to kick on and hopefully make a tilt for promotion to Division One for the first time in 13 years next season. Although they are languishing in mid-table in Division Two this term, this success has to be capitalised on. Their side contains four exciting homegrown players in Matt Clarke, Paul Hurst, Ian Breckin and Shaun Goodwin while the quality of the Goater and Jemson partnership has already been highlighted. While Clarke's form this season has attracted interest from Everton and Sheffield Wednesday and Goater is also in demand, the Millers must try and fend off any bids in the summer and keep their best players to build a team around. Making Jemson a permanent signing is also a priority. If the triumphant scenes at Wembley have proved anything, it's that the people of Rotherham will come to watch a successful team. There is the nucleus of one in position, now is the time for the club to kick on.

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