Rotherham United: Midfielder Rob taking his chance

Rotherham United's Rob Milsom
Rotherham United's Rob Milsom
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But midfielder Rob Milsom may be reflecting that he’s taking his chance right now or, at least, making the most of it. He’s certainly not passed up his particular chance.

The midfielder produced an eye-catching performance last Saturday and his performance was described by some as “outstanding”. It wasn’t an exaggeration.

Nor was it, on the evidence so far - even if half-a-dozen games hardly constitutes overwhelming evidence - a performance out of the blue.

He has slipped quietly but effectively into a midfield role and fulfilled it with the minimum of fuss and maximum efficiency. An ‘unknown’ who is rapidly becoming someone in the eyes of the Millers followers.

Not that he’s getting carried away. He’s “happyish”, he says, with his performances at the moment.

“There’s still more to come, I can do a bit more in the game and I want more of that type of performance every week,” says the 26-year-old Londoner.

And he adds: “I can improve on everything, on all aspects of my game.”

His arrival in the Summer from Aberdeen was slightly unheralded, with a touch less permanence than others considering that it was on a short-term, six-months deal. In other words “Prove yourself”.

He came very well recommended by ex-Scotland boss Craig Brown, who managed Milsom at Aberdeen, with no doubt whatsoever over skill. But he’d had some injury problems, notably missing much of 2012 through a knee injury and surgery.

The season opened from the subs’ bench and then the first start came when he was thrust in for the Capital One Cup tie at Aston Villa.

It proved an interesting start. Villa, fielding their full side apart from the full backs, didn’t take it lightly and Millers players found themselves under strong pressure in possession. No one looked more comfortable than Milsom.

However tight, he was never flustered, trusted his technique and passed with composure. He looked utterly comfortable on that stage.

It was probably a legacy from his upbringing in the Fulham Academy which he joined at the age of 10 - as a striker!

“I ended up in midfield but it was a good grounding,” he said. “I’ve had good people around me for the majority of my career but particularly at Fulham, they were amazing, and they saw the potential because they were working with me week in, week out.”

Those formative years coincided with the former French international Jean Tigana being in charge... “It was pass, pass, pass, right through the club,” says Milsom whose passing has been a feature as well as his willingness to accept the ball however tight the situation.

“I know it’s not necessarily like that in this division but there are right times to pass the ball and right times to do other things,” he says.

“It’s about getting the balance right and grasping that it’s not all about neat, pretty football. It’s a tough division and you have to adapt and or it could sink or swim.”

He added: “I’ve had my injury setbacks and this is a platform to go and perform and train hard every day.

“I was hoping I could get a run of games and, hopefully, I can go from strength-to-strength. When I’m enjoying it then you get the best out of me and I’m really enjoying it at the moment.”

Next up is Brentford where he made his league debut on loan from Fulham in 2008 - and Bees boss at the time was ex-Millers manager Andy Scott.