Reading v Rotherham United: Richie Smallwood fighting to stay with Millers

Rotherham United's Richie Smallwood pictured duelling with Sheffield Wednesday's Gary Hooper (Picture: Steve Ellis).
Rotherham United's Richie Smallwood pictured duelling with Sheffield Wednesday's Gary Hooper (Picture: Steve Ellis).
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THE end of the season probably cannot come fast enough for the overwhelming majority of Rotherham United’s bruised players, but Richie Smallwood is one of the exceptions.

The Millers’ midfield battler has business to attend to, with the former Middlesbrough man being mindful of his contractual situation as his current deal expires in June.

If you sulk and do not have a good attitude, you will not get anywhere. I would love to stay.

Rotherham United’s Richie Smallwood

Smallwood admits that his ideal scenario is to remain with the Millers, but he also plainly acknowledges that some strong performances between now and May 2 could tip the scales in his favour.

Millers, without an away win in just over 12 months, are at Reading this afternoon. They have not won in Berkshire in their past 15 visits, with their last victory there coming way back in May, 1977.

Smallwood, part of the Millers’ line-up who ended their crippling and morale-sapping club record 10-match league losing sequence with a point in a 1-1 draw with Birmingham City on Good Friday, said: “I am trying to do my talking on the pitch. In this business, it is the only way you are going to get noticed and get another club or get the chance to stay here.

“If you sulk and do not have a good attitude, you will not get anywhere. I would love to stay.”

On this afternoon’s tough test with the promotion-chasing Royals, who have won five of their past six home games with the Millers, he added: “The point (on Friday) was quite big. I know we drew, but it felt a bit like a win.

“But we know Reading are a good side and it is going to be hard. It is a big pitch and they are a good footballing side and challenging for the big prize. We will go there and try to get a win.”

Last six games: Reading LWWWLW Rotherham LLLLLD.

Referee: C Kavanagh (Lancashire).

Last time: Reading 1 Rotherham 0; February 23, 2016; Championship.