Richie Towell talks to www.themilllers.co.uk...
After seeing some familiar friendly faces during a mini-break over the international weekend, Rotherham United midfielder Richie Towell insists he and his teammates are feeling refreshed and focused on the final phase of their challenge to retain their Sky Bet Championship status.
Millers boss Paul Warne rewarded his side’s efforts with a few days off as the second tier took a break from league action, to pave the way for the Brighton and Hove Albion loanee to return home to his native Ireland.
Towell admits that the opportunity to recharge the batteries ahead of the run-in could be crucial to ensure that the Millers can go full-throttle in their final eight league fixtures.
“It's good to try and change your focus a little bit because when you're here, it's really intense and it's all you think about,” he told www.themillers.co.uk.
“There's only a month and a bit left. We just need to empty the tank now. We know what we need to do to stay in the league and we're all willing to do it.
“For me it was good because I got to go back to Dublin and see my family. I hadn't been home for a couple of months so it was nice to go back and see faces of family and friends and just get away.
“It's nice to get back for me and see family that you haven't seen for most of the year and it was a good little break.”
The 27-year-old is hopeful that the Millers can re-harness the impetus that they established in a run of good showings which yielded their first away win of the season at QPR recently, as they return to action in a tough game at Pride Park this weekend.
“Hopefully we can take that momentum into the Derby game and now we've had a little break, we feel refreshed and everybody is ready to go,” Towell added.
“We're coming off the back of some really good performances, obviously we didn't get anything against Norwich which was disappointing but I think the way that we've been playing and getting our first away win, has been good for us.”
“I think we've been playing well, so if we can continue to do that then I think we'll be fine.”
The games will continue to come thick and fast for the Millers upon their return to Sky Bet Championship action, with a home double-header against Nottingham Forest and then Aston Villa approaching on the horizon, but whilst Towell conceded that the games do take their toll, the competition for places has kept the energy within the team.
“We were playing Saturday, Wednesday, Saturday and you do get a bit fatigued,” he admitted.
“That said, we've rotated the squad a fair bit and lads have been fresh when they've come in.
“We're going to have a good week's training now and we're all looking forward to the game on Saturday.”