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Holden - 'We couldn't get that spark'

Dean Holden admitted City’s performance was below par as they went down 2-0 to a well-drilled Rotherham United.

The Robins fell behind after just four minutes when Matt Crooks headed in from a free kick before Michael Smith doubled the lead before the break.

Head Coach Holden told Robins TV: “It was a game where we weren’t able to get our performance levels up to the standard we’ve had previously. We knew Rotherham’s threats, set-pieces, first and second balls, and they dominated in those areas today. 

“They’ve scored an early goal which is disappointing of course, and when they score just before half-time it makes it even more difficult.

“That’s the first time this season I can look at the whole 90 minutes and think we’ve not really had the performance level we’ve shown previously.

WATCH DEAN HOLDEN'S INTERVIEW

Half-time changes

Holden brought on Adrian Mariappa and Famara Diédhiou to increase the Robins’ attacking threat but, apart from a blocked shot from the Senegal front man, they struggled to threaten the Millers’ goal.

Famara Diédhiou came on at half-time to increase City's attacking options

"We threw some attacking players on at half-time, changed the system slightly to try and get a way back into the game but we weren’t able to get that spark,” said Holden. 

‘We went Antoine and Callum as two attacking wing-backs which allowed us to get Fam up there with Chris Martin and Nahki Wells. We just weren’t able to maintain enough possession in Rotherham’s half of the pitch to create enough chances and it’s a disappointing afternoon

Antoine Semenyo battles with Matt Olusunde

Millwall challenge

“We know the type of game coming up on Tuesday, it’s quite similar and we have now got to respond really quickly, and they have already done that this season. They’ve already responded to a disappointment and that’s the challenge. 

“We learn from every performance whether we win, lose or draw and today will be no different. We will look at the things we didn’t do so well today, and we need to put them right for Tuesday because Millwall are quite a physical team as well so we know the threats they’ll pose us. 

“It’s a disappointing day, don’t get me wrong, the performance levels weren’t there today but there’s always the opportunity in that next game to respond and that’s what we’ve got to do.”

City's game against Millwall is live on Robins TV, with the programme starting at 7.15pm

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