DCSIMG

McCall making his mark

IT could be said that Stuart McCall is progressing nicely in his first tilt at management.

The former Blades favourite took over at Bradford City before last season. He had a few things to sort out to and it showed in City's slow start.

Gradually, it turned round and, from being bottom six just before Christmas, Bradford eased up into the top 10 before finishing 10th.

McCall was looking to build on that improvement this time and is doing that as he takes his side to Don Valley Stadium tomorrow to face Rotherham United.

They are among the promotion contenders, currently sixth and one of six teams on 27 points.

They have done that while becoming second-top scorers with 29 goals in their 16 matches.

Their three strikers, Peter Thorne, Michael Boulding and Barry Conlon, have got 22 between them..

Boulding was a target for the Millers in the summer but chose Bradford instead while Conlon had a spell on loan with Rotherham a couple of seasons ago.

Thorne, now 35 and taking precautions over a back problem by being rested in cup matches, has been a regular scorer against the Millers in the past for such as Cardiff, Stoke and Norwich (his only strike for the Canaries).

He still keeps popping up in his favourite hunting ground, the far post and beyond.

Last season's first meeting between the clubs was the first time he had failed to score against the Millers - he did miss a sitter from about two yards, though!

Boulding struck 24 goals last season for Mansfield and had a few clubs coveting him in the summer, with Rotherham in among them.

He chose Bradford and had been a regular choice up to the game at Wycombe last Saturday when McCall went for Conlon and Thorne. However, Boulding could be back tomorrow.

In midfield is youngster Nicky Law who is on loan from Sheffield United and former Rotherham midfielder Paul McLaren who was signed from Tranmere.

It means a game against his former club for Millers' left winger Alex Rhodes.

It was his dazzling performance for City - including a goal - against Rotherham at Valley Parade last February that sparked Rotherham interest in him and led to him joining them in the summer.

Missing, however, will be Reuben Reid who serves a one-match ban for picking up his fifth booking last Saturday.

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