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Opposition Profile: Rotherham United

16 June 2017

A new feature where we take a closer look at who Rovers will face in League One next season.

Rotherham United

Founded: 1925
Nickname: The Millers

Founded in 1925 as a merger between Rotherham Town and Rotherham County, Rotherham spent their first 25 years in Division Three North – the lowest level of the Football League – before finally gaining promotion into Division Two at the end of the 1950-51 season.

The Millers featured in the inaugural League Cup final in 1961, losing 3-2 to Aston Villa over two legs, and won the Auto Windscreens Shields Trophy in 1996, beating Shrewsbury Town 2-1 at Wembley.

They have achieved back-to-back promotions on two occasions, under Ronnie Moore between 1999-2001 and under Steve Evans between 2012-2014.

The Manager: Paul Warne

Norwich-born, Paul Warne started out with local club Wroxham FC, before joining Wigan Athletic in 1997, where he played over 60 games and spent time out on loan at Kettering Town.

He joined Rotherham in January 1999 and made over 250 appearances for the Millers, scoring 30 goals, securing promotion from the Third Division in his first full season and then a second successive promotion into the First Division in 2000-01.

Following a brief loan spell at Mansfield Town, Warne joined Oldham Athletic in the summer of 2005, where he played exactly 100 games and helped the Latics reach the League One play-offs in 2006-07, where they lost 5-2 on aggregate to Blackpool.

Following a two-year spell with Yeovil, Warne returned to Rotherham and scored in his first two games back at the club. He netted four goals in 35 appearances in his second spell with the Millers, before hanging up his boots at the end of the 2011-12 season.

Upon his retirement, he took up a coaching position with the South Yorkshire club and was appointed caretaker manager in November 2016 following Kenny Jackett’s departure.

In January 2017, he was handed the reins on a permanent basis and will remain in charge next season despite overseeing the club’s relegation to League One.

The Ground: New York Stadium

A 12,000-capacity all-seater stadium, the New York Stadium has hosted Rotherham United’s home games since it opened in July 2012.

Its name was chosen ahead of ‘The Foundry’ and ‘The Waterfront Stadium’ as the area of land that the stadium lies upon is called New York Island.

The naming rights to the stadium were announced in November 2014, with the stadium officially known as the AESSEAL New York Stadium for sponsorship purposes.

Rotherham previously played at Millmoor for 101 years, from 1907 (when the club was called Rotherham County) until 2008.

Last Season: 24th, Championship

Having appointed Alan Stubbs as manager in June 2016, Rotherham fans approached their third successive season in the Championship with an air of optimism.

However, it would prove to be a season to forget for the Millers, who became the first side in the top six tiers of English football to be relegated during the 2016-17 campaign, when their fate was sealed after losing 1-0 at home to Fulham on April 1st.

By this point, Stubbs had already been relieved of his duties in October, with Kenny Jackett taking over on a three-year deal. But the former Wolves and Millwall manager lasted only five games and 39 days before handing in his resignation.

Former fans favourite Paul Warne stepped up from his coaching position to take temporary charge in November, before being handed the job on an interim basis in January. Despite being unable to keep the club up, he was formally appointed manager on a one-year rolling contract in April.

In the cup competitions, Rotherham crashed out of the EFL Cup in the first round, losing 5-4 at home to Morecambe after extra-time and suffered an equally embarrassing exit from the FA Cup, going down 3-2 at home to Oxford United in the third round.

Last Meeting: February 11th 2017

A late Stephen Kelly own goal rescued a point for Rovers at the New York Stadium after Jon Taylor had fired the hosts in front just moments after the break.

Rovers had beaten the Millers 4-2 at Ewood Park earlier in the season and created countless chances throughout for it to be a repeat result.

However, Taylor crashed home Mike Newell’s pass two minutes into the second half and Rovers found Richard O’Donnell a defiant barrier in the Rotherham goal, with Jason Lowe and Charlie Mulgrew both rattling the crossbar.

But five minutes from time, Rovers got their reward when Kelly bundled Connor Mahoney’s corner into the back of his own net to secure a share of the spoils.


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