Northampton Town v Rotherham United: Match Preview

Questions still remain after Tuesday night’s defeat against Hereford United with severe implications coming from a fourth successive defeat. The backing to the manager appears to have been given by the chairman so again we move on to try and somehow turn things around. That’s not going to be an easy task as we go into what is, on paper at least, a tougher game against a Rotherham side who are scoring for fun away from home.

Their three goals on Tuesday night took their tally of goals in away games to 17 in 8 games and that means that no-one in the league has scored more on their travels.

Form…

The Cobblers are on a terrible run of form and performances with even the two victories the preceded the current sequence of four straight defeats coming against the run of play.

Rotherham picked up a good point in midweek thanks to a 3-3 draw at Morecambe that saw Andy Scott’s men recover from 3-0 down after 37 minutes to claim a remarkable draw. That, combined with Saturday’s point against Shrewsbury, brought to an end a run of four defeats that had taken the Millers into the bottom half of the table.

Team News…

The Cobblers should still be without Arron Davies with the midfielder’s back problems still holding him back. But Bayo Akinfenwa has been declared fit to play with the striker undergoing a scan on Friday that gave him the all clear to be involved in the game. Meanwhile, midfielder Derek Niven joined the ranks on loan from Chesterfield this afternoon and goes straight into the squad.

Rotherham team news to follow.

Club Links…

Guy Branston signed for the Millers a couple of weeks ago on loan from Bradford City. The defender also played three games for the Cobblers on loan back in 2007.

Last Six Meetings…

22/04/11: Cobblers 2-2 Rotherham

The infamous celebrations that followed a Cobblers recovery from 2-0 down on Good Friday last time has been etched into memory more than the game itself. After Leon McKenzie and Liam Davis had cancelled out a Paul Rodgers own goal and a Ryan Taylor effort, Cobblers fan Derry Felton invaded the pitch in his wheelchair to create a moment of humour in last season’s relegation battle!

23/11/10: Rotherham 2-2 Cobblers

The Cobblers had already come back from two down against Rotherham earlier in the season as well. Having gone behind to Ryan Taylor and Marcus Marshall goals, Abdul Osman and Andy Holt replied within minutes and the half-time score of 2-2 remained until the end.

13/04/10: Rotherham 1-0 Cobblers

Red cards everywhere in this one as Adam Le Fondre’s goal settled a promotion battle at the Don Valley Stadium. Ryan Gilligan had already missed a penalty when Craig Hinton conceded a spot kick of our own that Le Fondre scored from and Hinton was shown his marching orders for the challenge. Luke Guttridge and Danny Harrison were also sent off later in the game meaning that we ended with nine men and Rotherham finished with ten.

29/09/09: Cobblers 3-1 Rotherham

Ryan Gilligan and Courtney Herbert had the Cobblers in control in this Tuesday night encounter before Ian Sharps’ own goal made it 3-0. Adam Le Fondre’s penalty was only a consolation on this occasion.

24/02/07: Cobblers 3-0 Rotherham

The Good Doctor opened the scoring before Mark Hughes and Ian Taylor made the game safe even before the half time whistle had gone.

01/09/06: Rotherham 1-2 Cobblers

In the Cobblers’ first season back in League One, Dave Hibbert’s early goal looked to have given the Millers victory but a late brace from Scott McGleish turned the game on its head.

The Man In The Middle…

Taking charge of this one is Robert Lewis, a Shrewsbury born referee who was in the middle for Macclesfield’s win over Bradford on Tuesday night. Lewis was last in charge of a Cobblers game in last season’s 1-1 draw at Bradford and sent off the Bantam’s Jonathon Worthington in stoppage time.

Prediction…

There’s so much doom and gloom around Sixfields at the moment that I wouldn’t put it past us to go and win this one but my head says differently so I’ll have to say an optimistic high scoring draw – 3-3.

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