Richie Towell scored the opener for the Millers after 11 minutes
Last Updated: 01/12/18 5:58pm
Norwich produced an excellent second-half performance to see off Rotherham 3-1 at Carrow Road and move back to the top of the Sky Bet Championship table.
The in-form Canaries were briefly knocked off the summit at lunchtime when Leeds won at Sheffield United and it looked as though they might struggle to reclaim their lofty position when Richie Towell gave the Millers a first-half lead.
But Norwich took complete control after the interval with homegrown youngsters Todd Cantwell and Max Aarons scoring their first senior goals for the club and Teemu Pukki making it 12 for the season.
The win made it 22 points from a possible 24 for Norwich, while for Rotherham it was a first defeat in eight games.
The Millers were quick out of the blocks and got their noses in front after just 11 minutes when the hosts were guilty of some poor marking from a short-corner routine.
The ball found its way to skipper Will Vaulks on the edge of the box and although his fierce low drive was saved by Tim Krul, the ball bounced kindly for Towell to poke home from close range.
The Millers almost doubled their advantage nine minutes later when a swift break ended with Joe Newell being brought down just outside the box.
Referee Stephen Martin played advantage as the ball fell into the path of Vaulks and the Rotherham skipper was desperately unlucky to see his shot hit the inside of one post and then almost hit the other before going out for a goal-kick.
Cantwell was twice brought down on the edge of the area as Norwich continued to press, but Mario Vrancic’s free-kick was deflected just wide and Emi Buendia curled his effort just over.
Norwich started the second period firmly on the front foot, with Rotherham falling deeper and deeper as they sought to protect their narrow advantage. A number of corners came to nothing before the pressure finally told in the 55th minute.
It was a magic moment for Norfolk-born 20-year-old Cantwell, who scored his first senior goal for the club with a sweet close-range finish high into the roof of the net after Pukki had cut the ball back.
It became one-way traffic and Norwich deservedly made it 2-1 in the 71st minute when Aarons opened his account.
This time Cantwell was the provider, picking out the 18-year-old right-back’s run into the box with a glorious chipped pass from the left which Aarons nodded past Marek Rodak to spark raucous celebrations.
Daniel Farke’s side should have wrapped up the points six minutes later when Rodak pushed a stinging low drive from Buendia into the path of Pukki, but the City top-scorer fluffed his lines horribly.
But it was not long before the home side made it 3-1 following a terrible blunder by Rotherham defender Semi Ajayi.
He was caught in possession on the edge of the box by Marco Stiepermann who simply rolled the ball sideways for Pukki to slide the ball home.