Rotherham 0 – 1 Cardiff
Rotherham manager Matt Taylor felt the right call was made to call off their clash with Cardiff as players would have been put at risk of serious injury.
The match was postponed with just two-and-a-half minutes played in the second half.
Cardiff were ahead 1-0 thanks to a fifth-minute strike from Jaden Philogene, but a half-time downpour quickly made the pitch unplayable.
Referee Oliver Langford called the match off after two inspections alongside Rotherham manager Matt Taylor and Cardiff boss Sabri Lamouchi.
Cardiff refused to do a post-match press conference, but Taylor said: “I was so busy at half-time trying to get some information and tactical changes to the group that it was only when one of the coaches came in and told the players to check their footwear that I realised it had started to rain.
“I didn’t realise it had rained that hard. It was incredible and it wasn’t forecasted. We were not prepared for it. It hit the ground and within minutes of the second half being under way the referee made the right decision to take the players off the pitch.
“It was farcical. The ball was getting stuck and it was only a matter of time before a decision was made. The water was clearly not draining through. That is something that cannot be helped.
“It was a race against time to see if the pitch would improve at any stage. I told the players to stay ready because we had no timeframe.”
Taylor said the pitch was bad in its entirety and efforts to clear the water were not working.
Restarting after such a delay would have increased the chances of injury, according to Taylor.
He added: “It was still unplayable right in the middle. It was still a couple of inches deep in the middle. The ball was not bouncing.
“If we had gone back out there two hours later, the players are in a huge position of risk, not from the pitch itself but from cooling down and warming up again. There is a bigger picture which has to be looked at.
“Sometimes there is nothing you can do about the weather. It was a downpour like we have never seen.
“I sympathise with their journey and their fans. It doesn’t make them feel any better but I have been from Exeter to Barrow for a frozen pitch, so I have a little bit of an idea of how it does feel. But we will replay the fixture.”
On the first half, Taylor said: “They were better in the first half. We weren’t quite there at any stage in the game. I know we went behind and that affects confidence. We started making a few unforced errors and the team connection wasn’t there.”
An EFL spokesperson added: “Following the abandonment of this afternoon’s Sky Bet Championship fixture between Rotherham United and Cardiff City, the circumstances surrounding this will now be considered in-line with EFL Regulations.”
Hollie Doyle: Star flat jockey set for Friday return ahead of Lincoln meeting at Doncaster | Racing News
Leading flat jockey Hollie Doyle will make her return to riding on Friday at Newcastle ahead of this weekend’s Lincoln meeting at Doncaster, live on Sky Sports Racing.
The Group One-winning rider has been out of the saddle since January following an elbow injury sustained in a fall at Wolverhampton.
Doyle enjoyed another memorable season in 2022 with over 150 winners, partnering Nashwa to a first Classic victory as well as landing another Royal Ascot success on Bradsell and further glory on star stayer Trueshan.
She is set to make her return at Newcastle, taking the ride on Rhythm And Hooves in the 5:50pm race, ahead of Saturday’s opening flat turf meeting of the year at Doncaster.
Some of her rides include Richard Spencer’s Revich in the lucrative Lincoln Handicap, as well chances on Wilderness Girl in the Cammidge Trophy and the classy Tempus in the Doncaster Mile.
“It’s been a frustrating time on the sidelines, but it was great to receive the green light to return,” said the Sky Sports Racing ambassador.
“I’ve been back at Oaksey House this morning, and the team there have been fantastic right the way through my recovery.
“I’ll be riding out this week and am looking forward to getting back in the saddle at Newcastle on Friday and on Lincoln day at Doncaster and kicking on from there.”
Watch every race from the Lincoln meeting at Doncaster this Saturday, exclusively live on Sky Sports Racing.
England Women: Sarina Wiegman recalls goalkeeper Hannah Hampton and defender Esme Morgan | Football News
Sarina Wiegman has handed recalls to Hannah Hampton and Esme Morgan while uncapped Lucy Parker also returns to the fold as the Lionesses prepare for back-to-back fixtures against Brazil and World Cup co-hosts Australia in April.
Dropping out from February’s squad are the injured Emily Ramsey along with Lotte Wubben-Moy, Katie Zelem and Ebony Salmon.
Chelsea forward Fran Kirby continues to be absent as she recovers from a knee injury, while Bethany England also misses out despite scoring five goals in six appearances for new club Tottenham.
Wiegman said: “We are getting closer to the World Cup and I can’t think of two better games to assess our progress. After these games, there will be less than three months until we fly to the tournament and we must make every second on and off the pitch count.
“For us as a technical staff this will be the last chance to see the players within our England environment before we come together for the final preparation phase in June. And these two matches will be two real tests to see where we are at.”
The Lionesses have not faced Australia since October 2018 when Kirby scored in a 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage.
The last meeting with Brazil was in October 2019 at the Riverside Stadium when Debinha scored twice for the visitors, before England’s late consolation in a 2-1 defeat.
England squad in full
Goalkeepers: Mary Earps, Sandy MacIver, Ellie Roebuck, Hannah Hampton
Defenders: Millie Bright, Lucy Bronze, Jess Carter, Niamh Charles, Alex Greenwood, Maya Le Tissier, Esme Morgan, Lucy Parker, Leah Williamson
Midfielders: Laura Coombs, Jordan Nobbs, Georgia Stanway, Ella Toone, Keira Walsh
Forwards: Rachel Daly, Lauren Hemp, Lauren James, Chloe Kelly, Jess Park, Alessia Russo, Katie Robinson
April 6: England vs Brazil – kick-off 7.45pm, Women’s Finalissima (Wembley Stadium)
April 11: England vs Australia – kick-off 7.45pm, friendly (Gtech Stadium)
Anthony Barry: Chelsea and Bayern far apart in agreeing compensation for assistant to join Thomas Tuchel’s staff | Football News
Chelsea and Bayern Munich remain far apart over agreeing compensation for Anthony Barry to join Thomas Tuchel’s coaching staff.
Bayern have approached Chelsea about taking their assistant coach after Tuchel expressed an interest in bringing him into his new set-up.
Chelsea have made their position and expectations clear to Bayern for Barry to be released from his contract, and nothing has yet been agreed between the clubs.
But amid the uncertainty, Barry and Chelsea have agreed that he will not attend Cobham until the situation is resolved either way.
Chelsea have a list of potential replacements should he ultimately leave for the Bundesliga champions.
The Chelsea players return to training on Tuesday following international duty ahead of their clash with Aston Villa on Saturday at Stamford Bridge.
Barry is a highly thought-of coach who has also worked with Robert Martinez and the Belgium national team, the Republic of Ireland team under Stephen Kenny, and Paul Cook at Wigan Athletic before joining Chelsea in 2020.
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