First Team Coach Matt Hamshaw took time out to speak to local journalists this morning, ahead of Tuesday night’s hosting of Wycombe Wanderers at AESSEAL New York Stadium.
There was plenty to discuss ahead of another testing fixture, including team news, the form of Michael Smith and Chiedozie Ogbene, as well as the prospect of coming up against a Chairboys side who have made an excellent start to the 2021/22 campaign.
You can read the highlights from Hamshaw’s interview below…
Hamshaw on Portsmouth win…
“I know the manager had spoken before the game saying how important this run of fixtures will be against teams that will be there or there abouts come the end of the season, so to beat Portsmouth 4-1 is really pleasing.
“I don’t think we started the game as well as we’d have liked but we came back into it and started to get on top.
“We showed great character when we they got the equaliser, but picked it up again and scored three quickfire goals, which is positive.”
Hamshaw on putting chances away…
“I’ve done a few interviews this season and said that we’re creating so many opportunities and eventually we will take them, and that happened against Portsmouth.
“We know we’re capable of scoring goals and I think we saw the power of the fans again on Saturday, when they turn it up a notch it doesn’t half make a difference for the lads.
“I think the Portsmouth players got caught up in that in a way, so it was really pleasing to see.
“We won’t get carried away, we’ve got another tough game on Tuesday against Wycombe. We were all pleased with the win of course, but as soon as the final whistle goes we’re all focusing on the next match.”
Hamshaw on team news…
“Icky was struggling with a knock during the game on Saturday, he will get assessed this morning and Viktor Johansson will be the same.
“We’ll know later on how they are and fingers crossed they will be alright, but if they are not, we know we have a number of players chomping at the bit to get their opportunity.
“The way we play the game, we ask a lot of our players and the lads give us everything, I think we saw on Saturday even at 4-1, there is no sitting back.
“When you play on the edge you are always going to get niggling injuries, but we have a good squad and as I say, we’ve got lads desperate to get their chance to play.”
FREEVIEW | Richie's update on Ihiekwe and Johansson while Lindsay gets back out on the grass— Rotherham United (@OfficialRUFC) October 19, 2021
Watch here for FREE on iFollow Millers ahead of tonight's hosting of Wycombe Wanderers. ⬇️#rufc | #ForeverTogetherForeverProudhttps://t.co/gm5QK6yGAG
Hamshaw on Chiedozie Ogbene’s recent performance and international goal…
“He deserves all the success he’s getting at the moment, he’s a lovely lad and really dedicated to his job.
“He takes everything on and wants to be the best he can be every day. As a coach, you always love to see people like that get rewarded and for him to score for Ireland is great for Chieo and his family.
“The Irish fans have really taken to him and he’s been getting some stick at the training ground – we all clap now when he enters a room!
“Fair play to Chieo, he’s done really well.”
Hamshaw on Michael Smith…
“He has been excellent and he knows he has to be because the lads pushing for a place behind him are all brilliant players as well.
“He knows that if he’s not at it, there’s real competition for places.
“He’s taking the opportunities that are coming his way and I think that it all comes down to confidence, he’s not afraid of getting that extra yard and pulling the trigger.
“He’s working hard, he’s the first in and last out at training and it is pleasing to see him getting what he deserves for how he trains and looks after himself.”
👕| Richie Barker is clearly starting to fear losing his coveted match-worn Alan Shearer shirt to Magpies fan Michael Smith, whose goalscoring form is edging him ever closer to taking our assistant manager's prized possession!#rufc | #ForeverTogetherForeverProud pic.twitter.com/xNn5JspEu0— Rotherham United (@OfficialRUFC) October 19, 2021
Hamshaw on Wycombe…
“I think they will definitely be up there come the end of the season and it goes without saying that Gareth has done an unbelievable job there.
“They were really unfortunate – as we were – to get relegated last season and it wouldn’t have surprised me if this was a Championship fixture again this season.
“They’ve got a brilliant squad and kept the nucleus of the team they had last year. I certainly expect them to be right in the conversation for promotion.
“It will be a really tough game for us.”