Will Vaulks on something that may work in Rotherham United's favour in the Sheffield Wednesday derby

OLD boy Will Vaulks believes Rotherham United's league position could free them up to attack this weekend's derby clash with Sheffield Wednesday.
03/11/18,EFL,Championship,football,Rotherham United v Swansea City,Will Vaulks03/11/18,EFL,Championship,football,Rotherham United v Swansea City,Will Vaulks
03/11/18,EFL,Championship,football,Rotherham United v Swansea City,Will Vaulks

The midfielder spent three seasons with the Millers and will be lining up in opposition colours with Sheffield Wednesday at sold-out AESSEAL New York Stadium tomorrow.

The second-bottom Owls will feel the pressure to pick up points as they are fighting for their Championship lives but basement club Rotherham's safety hopes are virtually over and that could work to their advantage, Vaulks believes.

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“They've got nothing to lose in a sense,” the 30-year-old said. “We're in an awful position as well, by the way. We're in a position where we need to win games.”

Rotherham are 16 points adrift in the drop zone whereas victory for Wednesday, three points off the pace, at New York would keep them right in the survival mix.

Vaulks played in South Yorkshire derbies against the Owls during his time in S60 and is well aware of the importance of the fixture in Millers circles.

“I know what this game means for that football club,” he said. “The bottom line is that it's a local derby. I relish these opportunities and I'm looking forward to going back to hopefully get the win because we desperately need it.”

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The Welsh international was in the Rotherham team that were leading 2-1 in stoppage time at New York against Wednesday in a Championship derby in February 2019 only for defender Dominic Iorfa, making his debut as a last-gasp substitute, to bag an equaliser.

He and the former Wolverhampton Wanderers man are teammates now and he said: “I’ve mentioned it to Dom a few times. It was obviously devastating at the time because I was wearing a red shirt.

Vaulks doesn't subscribe to the view of some Wednesday supporters who claim S60/S6 showdowns aren't true derbies because the Owls have fiercer rivalries with Sheffield United, Leeds United and Barnsley.

“Look, I don't know if I'm wrong in saying this, but in my eyes it's a local derby,” he said. “It's not the derby, but any local game is going to be a little bit more feisty. It's a massive game for both clubs.”

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Meanwhile, the player revealed that the Owls were one of the clubs he talked to when he was leaving Rotherham in 2019. Eventually, with a year left on his contract, he moved elsewhere for a fee of more than £2 million.

“I spoke to Wednesday and it just didn't materialise in the end,” he said. “I won't go into the details of why but, obviously, I ended up at Cardiff City.”