Bolton Wanderers are Rotherham United’s next test at the ASSEAL New York Stadium this Saturday.
Here we take a look at who the Millers will be facing in our opposition analysis…
In the Dugout
Phil Parkinson will be in the dugout for Bolton on Saturday. The former midfielder represented three clubs in his playing career; Southampton, Bury and Reading, making over 500 career appearances. In his managerial career, he has won the LMA FA Cup Manager of the Year gong in 2015 as well as earning himself seven League One Manager of the Month awards.
In management, Parkinson started at Colchester United in 2003 and guided the Essex club to promotion from League One in 2006. He joined Hull City the following season but left the club in early December, with the Tigers in the relegation places. In January 2007, he joined Charlton Athletic as assistant manager to Alan Pardew. He was made permanent gaffer following the departure of Pardew in November 2008, firstly given the caretaker role before being appointed permanently on New Year’s Eve 2008. Parkinson was sacked in January 2011 and joined Bradford City shortly after. In his time at Bradford he took the Bantams to the Capital One Cup Final in 2013, beat Chelsea in the FA Cup at Stamford Bridge 4-2 in 2015, and took them from League Two to the play-offs of League One. He joined Bolton in June 2016 and guided the Trotters to promotion in his first season in League One, going up as runners-up before dramatically keeping them in the Championship last season on the final day.
Bolton arrive in South Yorkshire sitting in 16th position, four points above Rotherham in the table. In their last five games however, they have only won once, losing three and drawing once. Their last victory was the 29th September, winning 1-0 against Derby County courtesy of a Craig Noone strike. Their last two games have come as defeats, 2-0 against Stoke City and 1-0 against Blackburn Rovers. Bolton have only scored one goal in their last five games, conceding five.
This is the 40th meeting between these sides, with Rotherham winning 17 of these fixtures. Bolton have won nine while there has been 13 draws. Bolton haven’t won at Rotherham since 1966, but have won three of the last five between the sides, including the most recent fixture in 2016. Bolton won at home 2-1 courtesy of a 90th minute winner by Kaiyne Woolery with goals also coming for Jay Spearing. Chris Burke scored for Rotherham. The last time Rotherham tasted victory was Boxing Day 2015 with a 4-0 victory at home. Goals from Grant Ward, Danny Ward, Joe Newell and Jonson Clarke-Harris sealed all three points for the Millers.
Our opposition report starts with goalkeeper Remi Matthews. The on-loan Norwich keeper is currently on his seventh loan spell also representing Burton Albion, Hamilton and Plymouth Argyle. Bolton can also call upon experienced ‘keeper Ben Williams, with the former Manchester United stopper signing on a free transfer from Blackpool in the summer to provide competition for Ben Alnwick and Matthews.
In defence, captain David Wheater is experienced in the Championship. The former Middleborough ace has made over 180 appearances for Bolton and has represented England from U16 to U21 level. He could be partnered by former England U19 star Jack Hobbs. Hobbs started at Lincoln and has represented Liverpool, Scunthorpe United, Leicester City, Hull City and Nottingham Forest throughout his career.
In midfield, winger Yanic Wildschut has scored two goals for the Trotters this season. The on-loan Norwich winger could be partnered by fellow wide-man Sammy Ameobi, with the former Newcastle youth representing Nigeria U20 and England U21. On-loan Everton midfielder Joe Williams has also produced at Championship level, making 38 appearances and scoring once while at Barnsley.
In attack, summer signing Josh Magennis is top scorer with four goals this season. The former Charlton Athletic striker netted 10 times last season and has represented the Northern Ireland senior side on 40 occasions. He could be partnered by Christian Doidge, who will make his loan move permanent in January from Forest Green Rovers. While at the League Two club, he made 88 appearances, scoring 44 goals.