Why the Sheffield Wednesday derby means so much to Rotherham United skipper Sean Morrison

CAPTAIN Sean Morrison is in no doubt about the significance of the occasion when Rotherham United do derby battle with Sheffield Wednesday this weekend.

The Millers are already all but relegated from the Championship going into the South Yorkshire showdown with their rivals from across the Parkway who are also in the drop zone.

The centre-half fully acknowledges that Saturday's clash at AESSEAL New York Stadium is a chance to shine some light on the gloom that has been hanging over S60.

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“It's going to be a huge game, it's going to be a sell-out,” he said. “Wednesday are going to bring a load of fans over.

Rotherham United skipper Sean Morrison. Picture: Jim BrailsfordRotherham United skipper Sean Morrison. Picture: Jim Brailsford
Rotherham United skipper Sean Morrison. Picture: Jim Brailsford

“It's the biggest game of the season for our fans and we're excited at the prospect of building on some of our recent performances. Only this time we want the performance to get a result.”

The skipper was referring to the run of six successive defeats in which Rotherham have at times come close to taking points but ultimately fallen short of obtaining a favourable scoreline.

Morrison, who turned 33 last month, has been arguably the Millers' best outfield performer since finally overcoming long-term injury problems that were first sustained with Cardiff City and then continued at his new club.

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He was in the side that suffered the shame of an abject 2-0 loss at Hillsborough last October when he was still at the start of the process of finding his feet again and pushing for a regular first-team place.

“I said to you after that game, just give me time, give my body time,” he recalled. “When you miss 18 months of football - especially with now being the age I am - it's going to take a little bit of time to get up to speed.

“The player I am now compared to what I was five or six months ago, I feel like I'm back to my best.”

Rotherham haven't won since Boxing Day - a run of 11 matches - and have only three victories to their name in a campaign that began with Matt Taylor in charge and saw Leam Richardson take the reins in December.

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Morrison says a few victories are required between now and May to give the camp a lift before preparations begin for a new season.

“It's massively important for the club, the fans and the head coach,” he said. “The head coach is going to be here next year and I wouldn't be surprised if a few of the boys here are as well. You don't work so hard week in, week out to turn up on a Saturday and lose a game. We want to win matches, we want to get points on the board. We'll keep striving to do that.”

No triumph would be sweeter than one over the Owls who have won three of their last four matches to close to within three points of the safety reckoning.

A veteran of 460 games, Morrison has averaged around a goal every ten matches during a long, stellar career that saw him lead Cardiff into the Premier League in 2018.

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He's scored twice in 30 Millers outings so is due to put his name on the scoresheet again. “It would be very nice to pop one in on Saturday,” he grinned. The 6ft 4in defender, known for his no-nonsense approach, also has another objective …

“I've got a couple of mates who play for Wednesday and I wouldn't mind kicking them as well!”