PAUL Warne says Rotherham United have nothing to lose in today’s Yorkshire derby at Elland Road.
Promotion chasing Leeds United are proving they are good enough to go the distance under Garry Monk and are strong favourites to start 2017 with a victory at the Millers’ expense.
Despite Thursday’s defeat to fellow strugglers Burton Albion and a yawning 11-point gap to safety, interim boss Warne believes relegation can still be avoided and that his players shouldn’t be daunted by taking on one of the Championship’s better sides.
"The place there will be jumping but in recent years we have always done quite well at Leeds,” he said. “ Away form home we have been better lately and the games against the likes of Leeds and Newcastle do not hit me with as much threat now.
"There's no massive pressure on us, we're not expected to win, so we'll go there and hopefully take our chances and that might be enough."
Leeds start the year in fifth place, 29 points better off than the Millers, and Warne has noted their marked improvement this season.
“Garry Monk has done an amazing job,” he said. “It's a difficult club and a few people, weirdly, doubted his ability. They've turned the corner and they've even been winning when they haven't played that well and that's the sign of a really good side.
"I like Leeds and the way they play and there are some players not even in their matchday squad that I like as well. They're a good team to take on and it's a good test to see how far we have come.”
The fit-again Kirk Broadfoot and Greg Halford are both pushing for starts as Rotherham look to land their first away win of the campaign. Leeds are chasing a fourth straight home victory.
Kick-off is 3pm.