Paul Warne admitted Rotherham’s last-gasp defeat at Wigan Athletic capped a ‘very frustrating’ afternoon for the visitors.
The ex-Latics striker looked as though he would frustrate his old club as the already-relegated Millers twice led at the DW Stadium, through Danny Ward and Anthony Forde.
After Gabriel Obertan and Alex Gilbey had got Latics back on level terms, Nick Powell popped up with virtually the last kick to condemn the Millers - who’d picked up only one point on the road all season - to another demoralising defeat.
“Our away form this season has been disappointing, but I thought that we were set up right, we came here with a confident set-up by playing two up, we had a game-plan and it was working quite well,” said Warne.
“Wardy could have scored early on, but then we got the goal which was a good bit of play.
“I honestly thought that if we could have gone in 1-0 up at half-time, we would have been pretty comfortable.
“We conceded a counter-attack goal, and regrettably we have conceded a few of them.
“We took the lead again. We were a little fortuitous with the shot, with the goalkeeper (mistake), and I thought we would go on and score again.
“Their goalkeeper made a great save from Carlton Morris’ header, and then Wardy had a really good chance and we also had good patterns of play.
“They broke and got another goal and what happened in the 97th minute, which is a first, was very frustrating.”
Warne was particularly bemused by the flashpoint right at the death, when goalkeeper Lewis Price clashed with Powell as he booted a long kick downfield.
The referee booked both players before giving Latics the free-kick, which Powell promptly lashed into the roof of the net.
“From what I was told, my keeper kicked it and then it led to a ruckus,” Warne admitted.
“My eyes followed the ball but obviously something happened for the ref to get involved.
“I don’t think the assistant saw it. He never flagged.
“But they get the free-kick, and I just shut my eyes until the roar, and then wanted to throw up.
“I don’t wish bad luck on us, but I just thought if there was a footballing God, this wouldn’t go in.
“I’m biased, of course. But my team didn’t deserve to lose, so to come away with a defeat in such circumstances is hard to take.
“I can take pride that my team stood toe-to-toe in such a game.
“We’ve been on a terrible run, but I think we’ve lost 10 games by one goal and six by two.
“It’s not like the lads are getting embarrassed – they’re giving me everything they’ve got.”