Rotherham United F.C.

Rotherham United F.C.
Rotherham United
Rotherham logo
Full name Rotherham United Football Club
Nickname(s) The Millers
Founded 1888
Ground Don Valley Stadium
(Capacity: 25,000)
Chairman Tony Stewart
Manager Andy Scott
League League Two
2010–11 League Two, 9th
Home colours
Away colours
Current season

Rotherham United Football Club (nicknamed The Millers[1] or The Merry Millers[2]) are an English professional football club based in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, who compete in League Two, the fourth tier of English football. The club's colours have traditionally been red and white, although these have evolved through history. Their current home strip is red and white; their away kit is black with red trim. The club play their home games at The Don Valley Stadium whilst a new stadium is being built for the 2012–13 season.

The club have spent the majority of their history in the Football League's third tier, though their most recent success came in the early 2000s when they found themselves competing in the Football League Championship, the second tier of English football. They have also enjoyed more recent success, reaching the League Two Play Off Finals at Wembley Stadium in May 2010.

Andy Scott is the current Rotherham United manager and defender Ryan Cresswell is the club captain.



The first Rotherham United kit (1925)

The club's roots go back to 1870,[3] when the club was formed as Thornhill Football Club (later Thornhill United).[3] For many years the leading team in the area was Rotherham Town F.C., who spent three seasons in the Football League while Thornhill United were still playing in the Sheffield & Hallamshire League. By the turn of the century, however, Rotherham Town had resigned from the Football League and gone out of business; a new club of the same name later joined the Midland League.[3] Meanwhile, Thornhill's fortunes were on the rise to the extent that in 1905 they laid claim to being the pre-eminent club in the town and changed their name to Rotherham County. For a period both clubs competed in the Midland League, finishing first and second in 1911–12. Over time it became clear that to have two professional clubs in the town was not sustainable. Talks had begun in February 1925 and in early May the two clubs merged to form Rotherham United. Days later the reformed club was formally re-elected under its new name.

The red and white was adopted around 1928 after playing in amber and black, but there was no improvement in the club's fortunes: in 1931 they again had to apply for re-election. Immediately after the Second World War things looked up. After adopting Arsenal-style white-sleeved shirts, United finished as runners-up three time in succession between 1947 and 1949 and then were champions of Division Three (North) in 1951. Rotherham reached their highest ever league position of third in the Football League Second Division in 1955, when only goal average denied them a place in the top flight after they finished level on points with champions Birmingham City and runners-up Luton Town. The club held on to its place in Division Two until 1968 and then went into a decline that took them down to Division Four in 1973. In 1975 they were promoted back to the Third Division winning the championship. The Millers won the Division Three title in 1981; not only did they pip one of their neighbours, Barnsley, to the championship but the double they recorded over Sheffield United helped send their local rivals tumbling into the Fourth Division.

Rotherham had a dismal first half of the 1981–82 season but a surge after the turn of 1982 saw them emerge as promotion contenders for the first time in nearly 30 years. This was the first season of 3 points for a win rather than 2 in the league, and in the end they missed out on promotion by 4 points and finishing seventh. They have not finished this high ever since.[4] The highlights of this campaign were two meetings with Chelsea. Firstly the Millers defeated the Londoners 6–0 at Millmoor before winning 4–1 at Stamford Bridge in the return in front of just 11,900 fans. This exciting but ageing team, which included John Seasman, Tony Towner, Rodney Fern and Ronnie Moore, could not maintain this level of performance, and they were relegated again the next year. By 1988, United were relegated to the Fourth Division but were promoted a year later as champions.

During the 1990s Rotherham were promoted and relegated between the Football League's lowest two divisions and they slipped into the Fourth Division in 1991, just two years after being promoted, but reclaimed their status in the third tier (renamed Division Two for the 1992–93 season due to the launch of the FA Premier League) by finished third in the Fourth Division in 1992. They survived at this level for five years, never looking like promotion contenders, before being relegated in 1997.

In 1996 Rotherham United made their first trip to Wembley, beating Shrewsbury 2–1 to win the Football League Trophy, with two goals from Nigel Jemson giving Rotherham the win, with over 20,000 Rotherham United fans following them.

In 1997, just after relegation to Division Three, Ronnie Moore took charge of Rotherham United and became the club's most successful manager. His first season ended in a mid-table finish and then his second in a play-off semi-final defeat on penalties to Leyton Orient. It was third time lucky in 1999–2000 as Rotherham finished as Division Three runners-up and gained promotion to Division Two. They were favourites to be relegated in 2000–01 season, but surprised many by finishing runners-up in Division Two and gaining a second successive promotion. Famously, the Millers beat Brentford 2-1 at a sold-out Millmoor Stadium, with Alan Lee scoring the winner, sealing promotion. During this successful campaign, Rotherham also beat Premiership side Southampton in the FA Cup.

Rotherham managed to remained in Division One for four seasons, the most successful of which was the 2002–03 campaign. The Millers were in contention for a play-off place, but dropped off near the season's end to finish 15th, their lowest position all season. During their time in the Championship they managed some notable victories including two wins against Sheffield Wednesday at Hillsborough and a home win against West Ham United. The second season saw them finishing 17th with the highlight of the season a 1–1 draw with Arsenal in the League Cup at Highbury.

During the 2004–05 season, the club struggled and spent most of the season bottom of the league. The club was bought by the consortium, Millers 05. Ronnie Moore left by mutual consent during the campaign, after his team were rooted to the bottom of the division for the majority of the season.

After relegation to League one in 2005, Mick Harford took over as Millers manager, but was sacked after a run of 17 games without a win. Harford was replaced by youth team coach, Alan Knill. Early in 2006 it was announced that the club faced an uncertain future unless a funding gap in the region of £140,000 per month could be plugged. An eleventh-hour intervention by a consortium of local businessmen kept them in business.[5] The final match of the 2005–06 season, home to MK Dons, was a winner-take-all relegation showdown where a scoreless draw kept Rotherham up. Rotherham United began their second successive year in League One with a 10-point deficit as a result of the CVA which saved the club from liquidation. The club initially pulled the points back but, after losing key playmaker Lee Williamson and star striker Will Hoskins in the January transfer window, the Millers sat 13 points adrift of safety, making the threat of relegation inevitable. This resulted in Knill being sacked on 1 March, with Mark Robins becoming caretaker manager. Robins's position was made permanent on 6 April 2007,[6] but he was not able to save Rotherham from relegation. The Millers spent the majority of the 2007–08 season in the automatic promotion places but in mid-March 2008 it was revealed that Rotherham had again entered administration and would be deducted 10 points.

Local businessman Tony Stewart then took over as Chairman for the 2008–09 season and took the club out of administration via a Creditors Voluntary Agreement, resulting in a 17-point deduction.[7] The Millers were subsequently forced to leave Millmoor, their home of over 100 years, for the Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield, after disputes with the landlords.[8]

The Millers had a successful season under the new regime, wiping out the point deficit and being in contention for a play-off place. Rotherham were also involved in two cup runs, reaching the Johnstone's Paint Trophy Northern Final and the Carling Cup last 16. This included victories over higher league opposition in the form of Wolverhampton Wanderers, Southampton, Sheffield Wednesday, Leicester City and Leeds United. Mark Robins kept the majority of the team together from the 2008–09 campaign, whilst bolstering his squad with high calibre signings in the form of Nicky Law, and the prolific Adam le Fondre. The 2009–10 season started well including another "Giant Killing" win over Derby County in the cup. Manager Mark Robins then controversially departed, to rivals Barnsley on Wednesday 9 September, leaving the Millers top of the league.

Ex manager Ronnie Moore was reappointed on Friday 25 September 2009; Jimmy Mullen later being confirmed as his assistant. In January 2010 it was announced that the Guest And Chrimes site had been purchased and would be the new home of the club within two years with a new 12,000-seat stadium. Ronnie led the club to their first ever play-off final and first trip to the new Wembley Stadium. Despite the occasion, this game ended in a disappointing 3–2 loss.

On 22 March 2011, following poor form and a run of 5 games without a win (including a 5-0 defeat to rivals, Chesterfield), Moore and his assistant Jimmy Mullen left Rotherham by mutual consent,[9] with Andy Liddell placed in temporary charge.[10] Liddell's first game in temporary charge of the club was a superb 6-0 victory at eventually relegated Lincoln City.Despite Chairman, Tony Stewart stating that Liddell would be in charge for the remainder of the season, he moved to appoint Andy Scott as the new club manager, following several disappointing results, leaving the Millers with little chance of reaching the play offs.

During the close season, Andy Scott released 13 of the millers squad, surprisingly including key members of the team.[11] Scott announced that there would be several "marquee" signings to improve the quality of the team, and brought in several players from two divisions higher, including Schofield, Raynes, Pringle and Grabban.[12]


The club's traditional home is Millmoor in Rotherham. On one side of the ground is the site of the new Main Stand which is unfinished. It was hoped that the 4,500 capacity which is single tiered, all seated and covered, would be completed sometime during the 2006–07 season, but this had not come to fruition by the time the ground had became disused in 2008. On the other side of the ground is the Millmoor Lane Stand, which has a mixture of covered and open seating. Roughly each section on this side is about a third of the length of the pitch. The covered seating in the middle of this stand looks quite distinctive, with several supporting pillars and an arched roof. Both ends are former terraces, with several supporting pillars and have now been made all seated. The larger of the two is the Tivoli End, used by home fans. It was noticeable that the pitch slopes up towards this end. The ground also benefits from a striking set of floodlights, the pylons of which are some of the tallest in the country at approximately 124 feet high. The club left for the Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield in 2008.

As of the 2008–09 season Rotherham United relocated to the Don Valley Stadium in nearby Sheffield. The stadium has a total capacity of 25,000 making it one of the largest grounds in League 2. It is now the only league stadium to have a running track around the pitch.

In January 2010 the club announced that their new stadium would be built on the former Guest And Chrimes Foundry site in the town centre.[13] The stadium is planned to open within the next two years with an initial capacity of 12,000, later expansion to 16,000 being possible. [5] Preparation work on the site began in February 2010 to make way for the foundations to be put in place and for the old Guest and Chrimes factory to be knocked down to make way for the Stadium. On 13 April 2010 the first drawings were exhibited showing the stadium will be a single tiered bowl on three sides with a two tier mainstand. The concourse will also be at the back of the stands in a similar fashion to MK Dons' stadium:mk.

Board of directors and ownership


As of 12 May 2011.[15]

Current squad

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Republic of Ireland GK Conrad Logan (on loan from Leicester City)
2 England DF Dale Tonge
3 England DF Tom Newey
4 England MF Danny Harrison
5 England DF Ryan Cresswell (captain)
6 England DF Luke Foster
7 England MF Gareth Evans
8 England MF Jason Taylor
9 England FW Alex Revell
10 England FW Brett Williams (on loan from Reading)
11 England MF Danny Schofield
12 England MF Marcus Marshall
No. Position Player
13 England GK Jamie Annerson
14 England MF Oliver Banks
15 Wales MF Mark Bradley
16 England MF Paul Warne
17 England DF Johnny Mullins
18 England MF Ben Pringle
19 England DF Guy Branston (on loan from Bradford City)
20 England FW Chris Holroyd
21 England GK Andy Warrington
22 Wales DF Troy Brown
23 England FW Lewis Grabban
24 England DF Michael Raynes

Team management

Notable former players

The following players have made appearances for their respective national sides or made significant contributions to football at the club level.

Republic of Ireland
See also Category:Rotherham United F.C. players.

Club records

  • Record League victory: 8–0 v Oldham at Millmoor, Division 3 North, 26 May 1947)
  • Record Cup victory: 6–0 v 6–0 (v Spennymoor Utd, FA Cup 2nd Round, 17 December 1977, v Wolves FA Cup 1st Round, 16 November 1985, & v King's Lynn, FA Cup 2nd Round, 6 December 1997)
  • Record defeat: 1–11 v Bradford City, Division 3 North, 25 August 1928)
  • Record home attendance at the Millmoor: 25,170 vs Sheff Utd, Football League Second Division, 13 December 1952
  • Record home attendance at Don Valley Stadium: 7,082 vs. Aldershot Town (19 May 2010) Football League Two play-offs[16]
  • Record league points : 91, Division 2, 2000–01
  • Record league goals: 114, Division 3 (N), 1946–47
  • Record League goal-scorer: Gladstone Guest, 130 league goals, between 1946–1956
  • Record Cup goal-scorer:
  • Highest league scorer in a season:
  • Most goals in one match: 5 by Jack Shaw Vs Darlington, 25 November 1950
  • Most capped player: Shaun Goater (18 caps for Bermuda)[17]
  • Record appearances: Danny Williams, 459 league matches, 621 total matches
  • Youngest player: Kevin Eley, 16 years 71 days, 15 May 1984
  • Record Transfer Fee: £150,000 for Tom Pope[citation needed]
  • Record Fee Received: £850,000 from Cardiff City for Alan Lee
  • Record Gate Receipts: £106,182 Southampton FA Cup 3rd Round, 16 January 2002


Name Period Name Period
Billy Heald 1925–29 George Kerr 1983–85
Stan Davies 1929–30 Norman Hunter 1985–87
Billy Heald 1930–33 Dave Cusack 1987–88
Reg Freeman 1934–52 Billy McEwan 1988–91
Andy Smailes 1952–58 Phil Henson 1991–94
Tom Johnston 1958–62 Archie Gemmill & John McGovern 1994–96
Danny Williams 1962–65 Danny Bergara 1996–97
Jack Mansell 1965–67 Ronnie Moore 1997–05
Tommy Docherty 1967–68 Mick Harford 2005
Jim McAnearney 1968–73 Alan Knill 2005–07
Jimmy McGuigan 1973–79 Mark Robins 2007–2009
Ian Porterfield 1979–81 Ronnie Moore 2009–2011
Emlyn Hughes 1981–83 Andy Scott 2011–Present

Club honours

FA Cup

  • Fifth round – 1953, 1968

Football League Cup

  • Runners-up – 1961

Football League Trophy

  • Winners – 1996

Football League Third Division/Second Division (third tier)

  • Champions – 1980–81
  • Runners-up 2000–01

Football League Third Division North

  • Champions – 1950–51
  • Runners-up – 1946–47, 1947–48 & 1948–49

Football League Fourth Division/Third Division (fourth tier)

  • Champions – 1988–89
  • Runners-up – 1991–92, 1999–2000

Famous fans

The Chuckle Brothers were named as honorary life club presidents by former chairman Dennis Coleman. The brothers are lifelong supporters and maintain their close support of the football club and attend games whenever possible and appear to do the clubs half time draw at Don Valley on several occasions.[18]

Premier League and 2010 World Cup Final referee Howard Webb is a Rotherham fan.[19]

Chris Wolstenholme who is bassist for popular British band Muse is a Millers fan and has appeared on stage in a home shirt on some occasions.[20]

Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes actor Dean Andrews is a lifelong Rotherham United fan.[21]

Jamie Oliver adopted Rotherham as his 2nd team during filming of his ministry of food series. He appeared at a game in a Rotherham united shirt.[22] After the game he cooked up some food for the fans outside the stadium.


The club's shirt manufacturer is Puma, with the club having a sponsor for both the home and away kits. The Home shirt is sponsored by local shopping centre Parkgate Shopping. The Away shirt is sponsored by Rotherham One Town One Community. The back of the home shirt is sponsored by Perrys car dealership and the away shirt is sponsored by Sports Identity.


  1. ^ Rotherham history at talkfootball
  2. ^ History and stats at
  3. ^ a b c Twydell, Dave (1991). Football League Grounds For A Change. pp. 290–298. ISBN 0-9513321-4-7. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Millers survival likely as new group takeover Rotherham United FC
  6. ^ Millers name Robins as new boss BBC Sport, 6 April 2007
  7. ^ Rotherham accept points penalty BBC Sport, 7 August 2008
  8. ^ Troubled League Two clubs on the brink The Guardian, 6 August 2008
  9. ^ "Ronnie Moore parts company with Rotherham". 
  10. ^ "Club Statement - Rotherham and Moore part company". Rotherham United official website. 22 March 2011.,,10360~2321927,00.html. Retrieved 23 March 2011. 
  11. ^ "Fenton Shock Exit". Rotherham United website. July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2011. 
  12. ^ "New signings are quality". Rotherham United website. July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2011. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ The Board Rotherham United FC
  15. ^ "Profiles". Rotherham United FC.,,10360,00.html. Retrieved 24 October 2007. 
  16. ^,,10360~200910360,00.html
  17. ^ Includes only those caps won whilst at Rotherham United
  18. ^ Chuckle Brothers On Tour Rotherham United FC
  19. ^ [1] Rotherham United FC
  20. ^ [2]
  21. ^ [3]
  22. ^ [4]

External links

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