Rotherham United defender Cohen Bramall has reaffirmed his side’s desire to improve their form on the road in the Sky Bet Championship by stressing the importance of a bright start when the Millers travel to Cardiff City this weekend.
Matt Taylor’s men have enjoyed a solid start when surrounded by home comforts at AESSEAL New York Stadium but have faced some difficult days away from Rotherham so far in 2023/24.
There is no doubting that the belief that the club’s fortunes can significantly improve within the playing squad and staff with former Lincoln City defender Bramall embodying that confidence when talking to www.themillers.co.uk ahead of Saturday’s trip to South Wales.
"We know that we need to address our away form and we're working on that every day in training and we all know what we need to do. We want to put it right as quickly as we can because we know how precious points are in this division - home and away,” he explained.
"It's important that we start well in games like we have done largely at AESSEAL New York Stadium.
"I think we do the basics really well at home, we're on the front foot and I think that's what we need to do when we go away.
"It's important to get a foothold in the game in the first 10 or 15 minutes because after that I think we'll be fine.
"We don't need to complicate our game. We just need to do the fundamentals well and I think we all know that.
"Our home performances have been excellent, the fans have been class and we really want to reward those same people with results when we go away - particularly when we know the commitment they've made to travelling to watch us.”
The 27-year-old has featured in all-but-one of the Millers’ second tier fixtures so far this season – missing only the recent trip to Millwall through injury – and having been able to assess the campaign as a whole so far, believes that he and his teammates can consider themselves a tad unfortunate to not have more points against their tally.
The one-time Arsenal youngster was quick to point out that he and his Rotherham United teammates cannot feel sorry for themselves despite any injustices that they may feel have gone against them, before adding that if they are able to keep performing, the points will follow.
"We definitely feel like we should have more points on the board than we have. We've been unlucky but we don't want to be 'that team' that just thinks of themselves as unlucky,” Bramall continued.
"It's been one of those seasons so far where we've played really well in some games and not been rewarded with three points. Sometimes that happens in football.
"We believe that if we keep performing, the points will follow.
"We've only played eight games and we're confident in the quality we have within the group.”
Bramall has enjoyed a bright start to the 2023/24 campaign on a personal level and has been a regular in the Millers’ defence since the season kicked off back in August.
The hot-heeled defender has kept a number of second tier talents quiet – including some Premier League powers that visited with Leicester City – and barring one error, which he held his hands up for, has been a steady influence in the rearguard.
Keen to keep improving as the season continues to unfold, Bramall reflected on his own personal form.
"I'm pleased to be playing at the moment. I would say I've had an 'okay' start and I think I have loads more to show,” he added.
"I always try to be my own biggest critic because it helps drive me on to play better. I've had a few decent games but I know what I can do.
"It's still really early on in the season and I am confident that I can keep growing as the games go on.
"The error against Leicester was really deflating because I know I could have done loads more. I made a mistake, held my hands up, and at the end of the day that's just football.
"I wanted to 'own it' with the fans because we deserved three points that day against a top side and I felt as though it was my fault that we didn't get them.
"You have to try and stay level-headed in football. You can't get too high when you're playing well and winning and equally you can't be too low when you're losing and making mistakes.
"I've enjoyed some battles with some good players so far this season. Tyler Blackett was unbelievable in helping me [as a central defender] and I really enjoyed the challenge. It's different to playing at wing back because you're not constantly up and down the pitch.
"It's nice to hear people think that I played well against Norwich, but again, it's important to stay level-headed and just keep those performance levels up."