Marcus Braddock looks a head to the Boxing Day visit of Rotherham United
These years, the fixture list has us at home to Rotherham on Boxing Day, a team we've already played twice this season already. In our first encounter since the Millers relegation from the Championship, they scored twice in the first three minutes and killed the game off in the 45th minute with a third. The game ended 0-4, knocking us out of the EFL Cup. We played them again five weeks later and showed enough improvement to take a hard-earned point from a 0-0, can we go one better and win our third game on the bounce in League One?
Rotherham United sit just a point ahead of us in 8th position, but haven't won in their last four League One games. Their last win in any competition was four games ago in the F.A. Cup when they broke Solihull hearts with four late goals to win the game 4-3. Their last win in League One was November 23rd when they beat Milton Keynes 3-2 away. Away wins feature more heavily for Rotherham than for all but one other club in the division with an impressive six wins on the road and just three defeats from eleven games. This means that they have a +5 goal difference from away games to add to their +6 at home.
Their last two games have both ended as 2-2 draws, one at Southend and one at home to Fleetwood and given their injury and illness count, the Millers did very well to get something from the game. That hints at a strong squad that will test us, whoever they field.
Freddie Ladapo 9 (3)
Matt Crooks 7 (2)
Michael Smith 4 (2)
Matthew Olosunde 3
Ben Wiles 3
Three at home and three away.
Rotherham concede 42% of their away goals at the beginning of the first or second half.
The Millers have scored 62% of their goals in the second half and have scored eight times in the last half an hour of away games.
They've only failed to score once on the road this season, in their 1-0 defeat to Bristol Rovers back in September.
Marc Edwards from Tyne and Wear. Games this season: 16. Yellow Cards: 38. Red cards: 1.
This is another tough one against one of the best away teams in League One and as good as we have been defensively, we'll have to be at our best to get the result we want. The Millers have had a bit of a tough time with player availability recently, a bug has been going around the Rotherham squad but there is no news yet on whether it's claimed, further victims. Things for us have been going rather nicely, so we should take some confidence into this one and hopefully add a point or three to the total.
Merry Christmas and COYB!!!