Soccer

Matt Taylor wants Rotherham to kick on after beating Norwich

Matt Taylor’s side claimed their first Championship win of the season (Nigel French/PA)
Matt Taylor’s side claimed their first Championship win of the season (Nigel French/PA) Matt Taylor’s side claimed their first Championship win of the season (Nigel French/PA)

Rotherham manager Matt Taylor believes the 2-1 win against Norwich will give his players the “shot in the arm” they needed.

Taylor was breathing a sigh of relief as the Millers earned their first Championship victory of the campaign and inflicted Norwich’s first loss.

Dexter Lembikisa’s stunning strike – his first career goal – broke the deadlock midway into the first half, smashing an unstoppable effort into the top corner from the edge of the box.

Rotherham continued to dominate and doubled their advantage five minutes before the break when Cafu’s inviting cross was glanced home by Jordan Hugill, who took great joy in scoring against his former side.

Norwich started the second half much better and got a goal back through Christian Fassnacht, who poked in at the near post from Jonathan Rowe’s pass, but they could not salvage a point.

Taylor said: “We got the goals which always makes it a better performance in the first half.

“You always know there is going to be a reaction. Them scoring when they did gave us time to settle. We weren’t comfortable by any means but we saw out the game.

“We were close against Blackburn, with no points and more of a match for Leicester. It could have gone either way. The players have to keep believing because we are good enough to compete and we have to get something out of these games.

“It is a shot in the arm which they needed, which I have been trying to put in with words, but nothing speaks louder than three points.

“We were at a little bit of a crossroads and waiting for the first win to give us belief.

“I was disappointed with their goal and we could have taken more pressure off ourselves by sustaining our attacking moments.”

Norwich head coach David Wagner bemoaned their first-half display but was pleased with the reaction following a half-time dressing down.

He said: “The first-half performance was below par. We were miles off and not focused.

“It was not the energy level we expected. We spoke about this at half-time and it was good in the second half. We competed on a much higher level.

“In the second half we showed exactly what we were about. But it was too late. It was a deserved defeat. Every individual should learn from it.

“The defeat hurts but it is a reality check. You have to concentrate for every single second. It does not matter what happened in the last game.

“It was no surprise with how Rotherham played. We have known the answers and what to do. We showed it in the second half but not the first.

“This game is part of the start. Now it’s a good start and not a super start.”