The missing players, rewarding the 4,200-plus fans and the offers of new contracts ... Rotherham United manager Matt Taylor speaks ahead of the Wigan Athletic clash

The Millers manager was on media duty today.
Chiedozie Ogbene goes down injured earlier this week. Picture by Kerrie BeddowsChiedozie Ogbene goes down injured earlier this week. Picture by Kerrie Beddows
Chiedozie Ogbene goes down injured earlier this week. Picture by Kerrie Beddows

NO Chiedozie Ogbene, no Shane Ferguson, no Ollie Rathbone, no Ben Wiles ....

Rotherham United are operating a zero-risk policy with players carrying injuries now that their Championship safety is in the bag.

That means the club's biggest away following of the season will be cheering on some unfamiliar faces when the Millers round off their second-tier campaign at relegated Wigan Athletic on Monday.

"There will be some names on the bench which people won't recognise. It's a great opportunity for a couple of young boys," said manager Matt Taylor. "We still want to put out a team which is capable of winning this game, though, so we've got to try to get the balance right."

With a day of sales still to go, Rotherham fans have snapped up more than 4,200 of their 4,500 ticket allocation and there will be a survival party going on in the away end at the DW Stadium.

Taylor was brought up in Parbold, only a 15-minute drive from Wigan's ground, and will have a number of his family and friends at the bank-holiday clash.

He has no intention of letting them down and is just as keen for his side to do well to reward the red-and-white masses heading across the M62.

"We know we're going to be well supported at Wigan and we want to put on a performance. We want to be competitive. 

"We've just got to put our best foot forward in a slightly different atmosphere where there's no external pressure and we can go into the game with a bit of lightness about us.

"I can't waiting to hear more than 4,000 of our fans singing. It will be special."

Ogbene (hamstring) and Ferguson (groin) had to come off last Monday when the Millers guaranteed their continued Championship status by beating Middlesbrough 1-0 at a packed AESSEAL New York Stadium last Monday.

Rathbone, who is nursing a groin issue, and Ben Wiles, still seeking full fitness after ankle surgery, also featured in that contest.

Cameron Humphreys is being assessed after managing to play more than 20 matches in succession despite having a knee problem.

"Chieo and Shane will be obvious absentees after Monday's game and we won't put Ollie or Ben in a position of further exposure," Taylor said.

Meanwhile, the boss revealed that he has made two new-deal offers today and says there will be more to come once the season is over.

"Verbally I've done a couple and that will get confirmed with agents and various people in the next 24, 48 hours," he said,

Ogbene, due to become a free agent in the summer, is in discussions and his manager said the club would put their "best offer" to him.

The flying winger, who has spent four years at New York, has interest in him from bigger sides but the Millers' negotiating power has been increased by the fact that they will be playing in the second tier again next season.