Div One - Millers are second team to hit six away from home

Last updated : 16 December 2002 By Tony Scholes

The Leicester fans make Dennis Wise welcome on his return
Yes, for the second time the Millers have hit six and repeated the goalscoring touch they found on the opening day of the season when they won 6-0 at Millwall.

Only two other sides in the division have managed this number in a home game, Ipswich in a 6-1 win over Leicester and Grimsby in that incredible 6-5 result against the Clarets.

There is no doubt that Rotherham’s as to be the performance of the week and it moves them up one place in the league to 8th although Coventry’s win at in-form Wolves did run it close. Coventry had not been in the best of form and had suffered four successive defeats.

They have come out of that now with two away wins at struggling Stoke and now at Wolves. Struggling is the word for Stoke. They haven’t won a game since September but Saturday saw them pick up an unexpected point in a 1-1 home draw against leaders Portsmouth. Prior to this Palace were the last side to drop points at the Britannia Stadium back in early October and another 1-1 draw.

Palace once again had Nik Michopoulos on the bench as they beat Norwich 2-0 but there was no sign of Paul Crichton on the other bench. Norwich instead used young keeper Arron Lee-Barrett as they suffered their fifth consecutive away defeat.

Reading conceded their first goal since losing 1-0 to a Richard Cresswell goal at Preston on 26th October and were beaten 2-0 by Sheffield United at the Madejski a result that means all four of the clubs in the play off places have the same number of points, 39.

The Blades climbed into that top six as the other three as well as Wolves, whose place they took, were all beaten. Perhaps the most surprising of them all was Forest’s 1-0 defeat at Bradford against a side who had lost their last seven games.

Kenny Miller of Wolves gets a shot in during their home defeat against Coventry
With Stoke having taken points from leaders Portsmouth all eyes were on the Walkers Stadium to see whether Leicester could get any closer. All eyes were there anyway with the returns of both Dennis Wise and Mark McGhee.

Millwall took the lead after just 19 seconds with a goal from the offensive Steve Claridge but Leicester stormed back and won it convincingly 4-1 to move within five points of Pompey.

Elsewhere there were home wins for Derby, Ipswich, Preston and Walsall but no such luck for Sheffield Wednesday now bottom of the division. A midweek point for Brighton at home to Ipswich saw them climb above the South Yorkshire club. Gillingham were the visitors to Hillsborough where only rivals Sheffield United and Bradford have come away with nothing.

Gillingham collected an easy three points with a 2-0 win and the bottom four of (from bottom to top) Sheffield Wednesday, Brighton, Stoke and Grimsby are now falling behind the rest.

There are no midweek fixtures this week but a full fixture list at the weekend with one game on the Friday and one on the Sunday.

Friday 20th December

Brighton and Hove Albion v Leicester City (7:45 p.m.)

Saturday 21st December

Coventry City v Derby County (5:35 p.m.)
Franchise v Stoke City
Gillingham v Burnley
Grimsby Town v Sheffield Wednesday
Millwall v Wolverhampton Wanderers
Norwich City v Walsall
Nottingham Forest v Reading
Portsmouth v Ipswich Town
Sheffield United v Preston North End
Watford v Bradford City

Sunday 22nd December

Rotherham United v Crystal Palace (12:05 p.m.)

Leading Goalscorers (League only)

18: David Johnson (Nottm. Forest)
13: David Connolly (Franchise)
12: Alan Lee (Rotherham)
11: Richard Cresswell (Preston)
11: Neil Shipperley (Franchise)
11: Svetoslav Todorov (Portsmouth)
10: Darren Byfield (Rotherham)
10: Paul McVeigh (Norwich)
9: Nathan Blake (Wolves)
9: Ricardo Fuller (Preston)
8: Carl Asaba (Sheffield United)
8: Paul Dickov (Leicester)
8: Andy Johnson (Crystal Palace)
8: Junior (Walsall)
8: Steve Kabba (Sheffield United inc. 6 for Grimsby & 1 for Crystal Palace)
7: Jay Bothroyd (Coventry)
7: Brian Deane (Leicester)
7: Jamie Scowcroft (Leicester)