Oldham Athletic v Rotherham United: Millers are happy to adopt underdog role

Millers' assistant manager Paul Raynor.
Millers' assistant manager Paul Raynor.
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Rotherham are revelling in their status as the League One promotion race’s ‘unlikely lads’.

Whether it is manager Steve Evans revealing that rival bosses have been patronising in their assessment of his team, or Paul Raynor saying they are flying under the radar, the Millers are gaining strength from this seige mentality.

A run of 10 matches unbeaten, seven of which have been wins, certainly points to a side who are more than capable of upsetting the odds in the battle for a place in the Championship.

As it stands, Rotherham are closer to the automatic promotion places – nine points – than they are the chasing pack – 13 points. They head to relegation battlers Oldham tonight fresh from a weekend off, still content to let the promotion talk centre around more fashionable clubs like Wolves and Preston.

“We like coming under the radar like we did last year,” said assistant manager Paul Raynor. “We’ll keep plodding away and it’s a stupid old cliche, but we’ll take it one game at a time.

“If teams are getting nervy above us and the gap keeps growing below us then we will be more than happy. But we will keep our feet on the ground. Football has a habit of kicking you in the teeth, so we need to keep on an even keel. We want to increase the gap on the teams below us and reduce it to those above us, that’s all we can do. If they slip up above us then that will be fantastic.”

Last six games: Oldham DLWLDL, Rotherham WWWDWD.

Last time: Oldham 2 Rotherham 1; September 26, 2006; League One.

Referee: D Bond (Lancashire).