Seven games. Five wins. Twenty One goals.
Not a bad return from the ‘block’ of fixtures following the October international break, then!
After a scintillating run of form which saw the Millers catapult themselves right up towards the top of the Sky Bet League One standings and progress in the Emirates FA Cup and Papa John’s Trophy, the international break has once again offered the majority of the squad the chance to recharge the batteries.
For three of our internationals, the action has not stopped and, as we’re sure you will have seen, they continued to fly the flag for Rotherham United across the continent.
Chiedozie Ogbene was the name on every Irishman’s lips following a couple of stunning performances for the Republic in their final two World Cup Qualifying fixtures.
Firstly, he took on Cristiano Ronaldo, Bruno Fernandes & co and in many people’s eyes was one of the standout performers as Stephen Kenny’s men pushed the former European champions all the way in a 0-0 draw in Dublin.
The flying-winger stole the show again just three days later in Luxembourg. Popping up on both flanks, he used his blistering pace and direct running to unnerve the home defence and was a constant thorn in the side before a deserved goal on 75 minutes.
Positive in possession throughout the fixture, his enterprising play was rewarded with his second Republic goal, poking home from close range after being slipped in by substitute Jason Knight, the second of the game in a 3-0 victory for his country.
Shane Ferguson was handed a start as Northern Ireland defeated Lithuania 1-0 at Windsor Park, courtesy of a Benas Satkus own goal in the 17th minute, to move Ian Baraclough’s side up to third in the Group C standings, with their second qualifying win.
Ferguson was then an unused substitute a few days later, when the Green and White Army held European Champions Italy to a goalless draw on home soil, denying Roberto Mancini’s side an automatic qualification route to Qatar, with Switzerland taking top spot thanks to a 4-0 win over Bulgaria.
Joshua Kayode also featured in the latest round of international fixtures, coming on as a 56th minute substitute for Republic of Ireland U21s against Italy, replacing Colm Whelan.
Despite an impressive performance however, Jim Crawford’s team were defeated 2-0 at Tallaght Stadium with goals from Lorenzo Lucca and second-half substitute Matteo Cancellieri for Italy in their UEFA European Championship qualifier.
The striker will be hoping for a starting place, when his charges take on Sweden in Dublin tonight.