Shrewsbury Town crash out of the Carabao Cup at the first hurdle as they suffer a humbling defeat to league rivals Rotherham United.
Shrewsbury Town endured a disastrous start to the contest as they found themselves 2-0 down in less than three dismal minutes.
Matt Crooks and former Town loanee Kyle Vassell eased the Millers into a quick-fire lead. Another former Shrew, this time Rotherham’s record transfer Freddie Ladapo, made it 3-0 before the break.
Veteran defender Richard Wood rubbed salt into Shrewsbury wounds with six minutes remaining.
Sam Ricketts shuffled the pack from the side that lost 1-0 to MK Dons. Starts were handed to the likes of Joe Murphy, Omar Beckles, James Rowland, and Scott Golbourne.
The amount of changes potentially contributed to the lack of cohesion. And Town were chasing the contest with less than two minutes on the clock. Kyle Vassell, who failed to score in 13 league games for Town, spun his marker but was thwarted by debutant Joe Murphy. The rebound fell kindly to former Northampton midfielder Matt Crooks who gleefully swept home.
Calamity struck again for Town straight from the kick-off. Luke Waterfall and ex Shrew favourite Carlton Morris, contested a hopeful punt up field. The duo lay stricken on the deck, as Kyle Vassell seized the initiative. The striker, who was linked with a summer exit, squeezed a weak attempt underneath the body of Joe Murphy. To make matters worse Luke Waterfall’s return to the first team squad lasted just four minutes, as his collision with Morris rendered him unable to continue. The Rotherham forward’s evening also came to a premature end.
Shrewsbury looked void of confidence and were shaky on the ball, but at least managed to stem the flow. James Rowland tried to make things happen as his darting run eventually saw possession with Scott Golbourne out wide. The former Bristol City man had options, but a Rotherham player down in the box halted play.
Lacklustre Town could only conjure up half-hearted attempts from Brad Walker and Ryan Barnett, as the home players left to a chorus of boos and unflattering chants.
The second half began in the same vein as the first. Kyle Vassell was a constant menace, showing capabilities that were rarely seen when he donned a Town shirt. Freddie Ladapo had a low effort stopped by Murphy, as the visitors continued to swarm forward.
Shrewsbury were slightly better during the second period. James Rowland, perhaps the only shining light of an otherwise grim evening, danced past two defenders before his shot was well held by Lewis Price.
Despite brief signs of improvement, haphazard defending, which was severely contrasted to that shown on the opening day against Portsmouth, was almost Town’s downfall once more. Michael Smith would have made it 3-0 but for the quick reactions of Joe Murphy. Shrewsbury did eventually clear their lines.
Shaun Whalley had decent calls for a penalty turned down when he was clattered inside the box by right-back Matt Olosunde, but the game very much belonged to Paul Warne’s men.
A 2-0 defeat against promoted side Lincoln City at the weekend was quickly forgotten about, as goal number four arrived in the 84th minute. Defender Richard Wood diverted a corner home, to end a woeful display by the hosts.
Sam Ricketts will be demanding a reaction as Shrewsbury welcome Rochdale on Saturday. Rotherham visit Burton.
Attendance: 2,830 (164 away fans)
Team Line Ups
Shrewsbury Town: (3-5-2)
1. Murphy, 24. Ebanks-Landell, 22. Waterfall (6), 6. Beckles, 18. Barnett, 26. Rowland, 15. Walker, 18. McCormick, 3. Golbourne (45), 10. Okenabirhie, 20. Morison (78)
Subs: 2. Pierre (6), 7. Whalley (45), 11. Giles (78), 16. Vincelot, 17. Love, 25. O’Leary, 29. Taylor
Subs Not Used: 16. Vincelot, 17. Love, 25. O’Leary, 29. Taylor
Rotherham United: (4-3-3)
12. Price, 22. Olosunde, 20. Ihiekwe, 6. Wood, 15. Robertson, 8. Wiles (76), 11. Barlaser, 17. Crooks, 14. Morris (6), 10. Ladapo (64), 7. Vassell
Subs: 1. Iversen, 3. Mattock, 4. MacDonald (64), 9. Proctor, 16. Lindsey (76), 24. Smith (6), 33. Southern-Cooper
Subs Not Used: 1. Iversen, 3. Mattock, 9. Proctor, 33. Southern-Cooper
Other Round One Carabao Cup Results
AFC Wimbledon 2 – 2 MK Dons
Accrington 1 – 3 Sunderland
Barnsley 0 – 3 Carlisle
Blackburn 3 – 2 Oldham
Blackpool 2 – 2 Macclesfield (Macclesfield win 4-2 on pens)
Bradford 0 – 4 Preston
Brentford 1 – 1 Cambridge (Cambridge win 5-4 on pens)
Bristol Rovers 3 – 0 Cheltenham
Charlton 0 – 0 Forest Green (Forest Green win 5-3 on pens)
Colchester 3 – 0 Swindon
Coventry 4 – 1 Exeter
Gillingham 2 – 2 Newport (Newport win 4-1 on pens)
Grimsby 1 – 0 Doncaster
Huddersfield 0 – 1 Lincoln
Luton 3 – 1 Ipswich
Mansfield 2 – 2 Morecambe (Morecambe win 6-5 on pens)
Middlesbrough 2 – 2 Crewe (Crewe win 4-2 on pens)
Nottingham Forest 1 – 0 Fleetwood
Oxford 1 – 0 Peterborough
Plymouth 2 – 0 Leyton Orient
Port Vale 1 – 2 Burton
QPR 3 – 3 Bristol City (QPR win 5-4 on pens)
Rochdale 5 – 2 Bolton
Salford 0 – 3 Leeds
Scunthorpe 0 – 1 Derby
Stevenage 1 – 2 Southend
Swansea 3 – 1 Northampton
Tranmere 0 – 3 Hull
Walsall 2 – 3 Crawley
Wigan 0 – 1 Stoke
Wycombe 1 – 1 Reading (Reading win 4-2 on pens)
West Brom 1 – 2 Millwall