Match preview: Rotherham United v Ipswich Town – Hurst on facing his boyhood club, plus all the team news and stats

PUBLISHED: 06:00 11 August 2018

Paul Hurst (right) saw his Shrewsbury Town side lose to Paul Warne's (left) Rotherham United outfit in the League One Play-Off Final back in May. Photo: PA

Paul Hurst (right) saw his Shrewsbury Town side lose to Paul Warne's (left) Rotherham United outfit in the League One Play-Off Final back in May. Photo: PA

PA Wire/PA Images

Ipswich Town face newly-promoted Rotherham United at the New York Stadium this afternoon (3pm). Here’s all you need to know.

Toto Nsiala and Jon Nolan could make thier Town debuts today after joining from Shrewsbury Town in a £2m double deal this week. Photo: ITFCToto Nsiala and Jon Nolan could make thier Town debuts today after joining from Shrewsbury Town in a £2m double deal this week. Photo: ITFC

Rotherham United may be a club close to Paul Hurst’s heart, but the Ipwich Town manager is out for a little bit of revenge today.

The new Blues boss made more than 500 appearances for the Millers as a left-back, playing at League Two, League One and Championship level for the South Yorkshire club.

It was them who inflicted his most painful moment as a manager though when beating his Shrewsbury Town side after extra-time of the League One Play-Off Final at Wembley last May.

By chance, Hurst’s first competitive away trip as Town boss is to the New York Stadium.

Kayden Jackson is another who could make his Town debut after joining the Blues from Accrington Stanley on deadline day. Photo: ITFCKayden Jackson is another who could make his Town debut after joining the Blues from Accrington Stanley on deadline day. Photo: ITFC

MORE: ‘It was the big turning point in my career’ - Nolan excited to be working under Hurst again

“Rotherham are very close to my heart having spent almost all of my playing career there,” he said. “I’m pleased for them as a football club and pleased for the lads that are there, Paul Warne, Richard Barker, Matt Hamshaw, Mike Pollitt, because I played with three of them.

“They’re very good lads and it will be nice to see them on Saturday, but hopefully it might be my turn to be smiling at the end of the game.”

He says he gets on well with Rotherham boss Warne, who is a Norwich City supporter and a former Canaries youth player.

“He’s a great character,” said Hurst. “He makes people laugh. He doesn’t want to be a manager, but I think he’s enjoyed it the more success he’s had.

MORE: From Chalobah to Jackson – introducing Ipswich Town’s nine new faces

“Fair play to him for sticking with it because he was thrown in at a very difficult time when Rotherham were really struggling in the Championship and that was a real baptism of fire for him.

“This time I’ll know he’ll be a lot more optimistic about his chances in the league and they’ll be better prepared.”

Grant Ward is available again after serving the final match of a three-game suspension last weekend. Photo: Ross HallsGrant Ward is available again after serving the final match of a three-game suspension last weekend. Photo: Ross Halls

The Millers’ return to the Championship got off to the worst possible start last weekend when they were thrashed 5-1 by Brentford at Griffin Park.

“We know they’re going to be fired up for it,” said Hurst. “I know they’ll be a very fit group of players who will give absolutely everything for Warney and that football club and we’ve got to make sure we’re ready and up for that challenge.

MORE: Forward and centre-back wanted on loan after dramatic deadline day

“Yes, it was a heavy defeat at Brentford, but I have to say I’ve watched the game and Brentford played extremely well.

“Rotherham kept going right to the end so, make no mistake, it’s not going to be a team that’s just going to crumble. We’re going to have to earn everything.”

Opposition lowdown

Last five finishes: 4th (Lg One), 24th, 21st, 21st (all Champ’), 4th (Lg One)

Rotherham United manager Paul Warne with the League One Play-Off Final trophy. Photo: PARotherham United manager Paul Warne with the League One Play-Off Final trophy. Photo: PA

Manager: Paul Warne (Nov ‘16) W32 D13 L40

Ground: New York Stadium (capacity: 12,021)

Last weekend: L 5-1 Brentford (a)

Top league scorers 17/18: Moore (13), Ball (8)

Most league assists 17/18: Williams (9)

Most league starts 17/18: Vaulks (38)

Rodak (35), Wood, Towell, Mattock (34)

New signings: Jones (Sunderland, free), Robertson (Blackpool, free), Vassell (Blackpool, free), Vyner (Bristol City, loan), Raggett (Norwich, loan)

Last meeting

Rotherham Utd 1 Ipswich Town 0

Date: Saturday, April 22, 2017

Having just secured safety, an experimental Blues team lost to the rock-bottom Millers courtesy of a goal scored by future signing Tom Adeyemi.

Town won 5-2 on their previous trip to the New York Stadium (Nov ‘15) as Daryl Murphy bagged a hat-trick.

Stat attack

30 – Games Josh Emmanuel started during his loan spell at Rotherham last season

1 – Championships starts among Town’s nine summer signings (Edun) prior to last weekend

111 – Combined league starts made by departed quartet Waghorn, Garner, Webster and McGoldrick last season

Ipswich Town team news

• Grant Ward is available again after missing last week’s 2-2 home draw with Blackburn through suspension.

• Long-term absentees Emyr Huws, Teddy Bishop and Danny Rowe all featured in a behind-closed-doors friendly against Cambridge on Monday but are nowhere near ready for first team action still.

• Jon Nolan, Toto Nsiala and Kayden Jackson could all make their debuts after being signed this week.

Rotherham Utd team news

• Experienced midfielder Darren Potter is the only player in the treatment room at present.

• Asked if he would make many changes to his side following a 5-1 defeat at Brentford, Paul Warne said: “Hursty will be watching this, so I better pick my words carefully. Brentford are an amazing team so it would be wrong of me to make numerous changes based on that. I have to pick the best 11 players who can go toe-to-toe with Ipswich.”

• The Millers have a dearth of central midfield options at present and will be looking to strengthen in the loan market.

Opposition key man

Ryan Williams

The Australian winger is direct, skilful and not afraid to get stuck in either. The ex-Barnsley man is dangerous on his day but end product can sometimes let him down.

Odds

Rotherham United 16/11

Draw 23/10

Ipswich Town 11/5

Referee

David Webb (Lancashire)

17/18 – Yellows: 94, Red: 3

Stu’s prediction

Rotherham Utd 1 Ipswich Town 1

This new-look Blues side may need time to find their feet.

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