Rotherham – Charlton protect 34 year unbeaten record

You have to go back to New Years Day 1983 at Millmoor to find the last time we lost to Rotherham. In fact, despite the fact that they were relegated from Division Two that year, they beat us in both games. They came to The Valley on November 20th 1982 for what should have been Allan Simonsen's second game. His withdrawal through injury knocked 4000 off the crowd and the away team cantered home 5-1 with goals from Ronnie Moore and Tony Towner. Simonsen didn't appear again until the 4th December 2-0 defeat of Newcastle - a game which was apparently watched on TV by 60% of Denmark's population.

In fact we had an awful record against Rotherham in the 1970s and 80s - they beat us in seven out of eight - but in our four games since the turn of the century we have managed three 1-1 draws and that memorable 4-1 win at The New York Stadium in January 2016. Riga had just taken over from the hapless Fraeye and, from that performance, it looked as if he might be able to stave off relegation. But it was Rotherham under Neil Warnock who stayed up - only to follow us down twelve months later.

Without Warnock they found themselves in 24th place pretty well from the first day of last season. Alan Stubbs was dispensed with and even Kenny Jackett couldn't turn things round and he was gone by the end of November. His replacement was ex-player Paul Warner who presided for the rest of a season which saw 4 wins, 4 draws and 21 defeats. Remarkably, he is still in post.

The Millers only home league game this season saw a 5-0 trouncing of Southend with a first half hat trick from six foot five Ipswich Town loanee Kieffer Moore (no, not a relation). They have lost their other two games against clubs which have made a strong start to the season - 1-2 at Peterborough and 0-2 at Fleetwood.

Charlton fans might be interested to see how ex-professional development player Semi Ajayi performs. When he left Charlton and signed for Arsenal in September 2013 it looked as if we might have let a gem slip through our fingers. Although he made the bench four times at Arsenal he never made an appearance and joined Cardiff on loan in March 2015.  Again, he failed to break into the team and found himself on loan at Crewe, AFC Wimbledon and finally Rotherham where he featured seventeen times last season and was rewarded with a permanent deal. After the defeat at Peterborough last week he left the field "with head bowed" according to The Sheffield Star and he came in for heavy criticism both from fans and his manager who said that he must learn to cut out mistakes.  It remains to be seen whether he will be selected for Saturday but it does perhaps begin to look as if the coaches at Sparrows Lane knew what they were doing when they let him go four years ago.

The game will also reunite Karl Robinson with his former assistant Richie Barker who now fulfils the same role at The New York Stadium. It will be important for Charlton to at least avoid defeat or they may begin to look like a team which is good at home but is a soft touch away. It would be nice to win it 4-1 but 1-1 wouldn't be a bad result.