MX23RW : Sunday, January 20 19:57:31
Apr 28, 2015 at 7.45pm UK at ​The New York Stadium
RotherhamRotherham United
FT(HT: 0-0)
Norwood (87')

Preview: Rotherham United vs. Reading

Sports Mole gives you the lowdown on Tuesday's Championship game as Rotherham United look to seal their safety by defeating Reading.

Both Millwall and Wigan Athletic will be following Tuesday night's sole Championship match between Rotherham United and Reading hoping that the out-of-form visitors can put an end to their winless run.

If Rotherham win, both Millwall and Wigan will be confirmed as relegated, while a draw would keep Millwall alive but send Wigan down. A Reading victory would take the relegation scrap to the final day of the season on Saturday.


Steve Evans, manager of Rotherham United during the Pre Season Friendly match between Rotherham United and Nottingham Forest at The New York Stadium on July 23, 2014© Getty Images

Of the three sides who could finish in the final two relegation spots, Rotherham are by far the best placed to avoid the drop.

Steve Evans's side held promotion hopefuls Norwich City to a draw on Saturday to move one point clear of Millwall and three clear of Wigan. This is their game in hand and offers them a great chance to confirm their second-tier status.

They are not yet safe following a haul of just five points out of a possible 24 (W1, D2, L5) and it is their away form in particular which has them dangerously close to the drop.

The Millers have won only three times on the road all season and only already-relegated Blackpool have a worse record on their travels.

At home, Evans's men have taken four points out of six in their last two games, but lost three on the trot while conceding eight goals before that.

Recent form: LLWLDD


Reading manager Steve Clarke during the Sky Bet Championship match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Reading at The Amex Stadium on December 26, 2014© Getty Images

If you could offer Evans the choice of playing any other team in the league when his side desperately need a win, he might opt for ice-cold Reading.

The Royals haven't scored in 404 minutes of league football and are one of four sides at the bottom of the form guide without a win in six games.

Both in the league and in all competitions, Reading are without a win in eight games and suffering a worrying end to the campaign.

Funnily enough, the only team Reading have scored against since Grant Hall's own goal in the 1-1 draw with lowly Blackpool are Premier League giants Arsenal, who they took to extra time in the FA Cup semi-finals last weekend.

Adam Federici's error cost them dearly at Wembley, but the Australian stopper has since been named the Supporters' Player of the Season and should get a new contract.

Because of their FA Cup run, Reading's last four league games have all been at home but after failing to score in any of them, they might be glad to be back on the road.

On Saturday playoff-chasing Brentford made the short trip West to Berkshire and were the 10th team this season to take all three points from the Madejski Stadium.

Recent Championship form: DDDLLL
Recent form (all competitions): DDLLLL

Team News

Jamie Mackie of Reading celebrates after scoring the opening goal of the game during the Sky Bet Championship match between Reading and Rotherham United at Madejski Stadium on November 04, 2014© Getty Images

Jordan Bowery scored Rotherham's late equaliser against Norwich for just his fifth goal since a club-record move from Aston Villa last summer. It certainly hasn't gone to plan for the 23-year-old, but Evans believes that he is slowly getting there and could name him in the starting lineup.

The Millers' other substitute on Saturday, Adam Hammill, set up Bowery's goal and could also earn a recall with Evans likely to freshen up his lineup.

Steve Clarke is likely to ring the changes too given Reading's woeful record of late in front of goal.

Pavel Pogrebnyak has missed the Royals' last two games, but could again be missing for the trip North. Elsewhere, the likes of Simon Cox, Nick Blackman and Jem Karacan will be hoping to be recalled.

Rotherham possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Hunt, Morgan, Broadfoot, Lafferty; Frecklington, Smallwood, Arnason, Hammill; Bowery, Derbyshire

Reading possible starting lineup:
Federici; Gunter, Pearce, Hector, Obita; Chalobah, Karacan, Williams; McCleary, Mackie, Blackman

Referee: Graham Salisbury

Head To Head

The November reverse was the first meeting between the two sides since 2005 and ended in a convincing 3-0 win in Reading's favour, but Rotherham have had the better of it when hosting the Royals.

The Millers have lost just one of their last six at home to Reading in league competition, winning the last two.

If Reading again fail to find the net, they will need to keep their seventh clean sheet in nine games against Rotherham to take anything from South Yorkshire.

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We say: Rotherham 1-1 Reading

All the pressure will be on Rotherham and it's hard to see them blowing away Reading on what is sure to be a tense evening at the New York Stadium. It could really go either way with both sides nastily out of form, so a draw is probably the most likely outcome.

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Who will win Tuesday's game, Rotherham or Reading?

Alex Pearce of Reading in action during the Sky Bet Championship match between Reading and Ipswich Town at the Madejski Stadium on August 03, 2013
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