ROTHERHAM United have not ruled out the possibility of signing Huddersfield Town defender Liam Ridehalgh on a permanent basis in the summer.
A week ago, the Millers extended the 21-year-old’s loan deal until the end of the 2012/13 season.
Ridehalgh has produced a string of impressive performances since moving to South Yorkshire in November. The Halifax-born player, who spent time on loan at Chesterfield earlier this term, has made seven appearances in Rotherham colours, five of which the team have won.
“Liam is a good player and that’s why we have extended his loan,” said Millers assistant manager Paul Raynor. “But there is a long time between now and the end of the season.
“He is a player we like and a player we have enjoyed working with. Liam is very responsive to what we are trying to do. He is a great professional and the good thing is he wants to be here. He sees what we are trying to do and sees the potential of the club.
“At the moment, he is still a Huddersfield player and we have to respect that. We will wait and see with that one.”
Ridehalgh’s contract runs out at Huddersfield in the summer and that is when the Championship outfit plan on making a decision on his situation. The left-back says he is enjoying his spell with Rotherham and has told The Star he is keeping his options open regarding his future.
Raynor said: “It was very important to get Liam’s loan extended because we let Laurence Wilson go and it has been a position where we have chopped and changed a little bit.
“Liam has come in and he is very dependable. We look and analyse all the goals we concede and not too many come down that right hand side when Liam is playing. He is a steady performer.”
Due to the bad weather, Rotherham’s trip to Oxford United, scheduled for Saturday, was postponed on Friday afternoon for safety reasons. Steve Evans, the Millers manager, said he was glad “common sense” prevailed and the decision was made before they travelled south. The club have already experienced three late call offs this season at Accrington Stanley, Notts County and Bristol Rovers.
“Our supporters have travelled long distances this season on three occasions for the matches to be postponed late and that costs time and a lot of hard earned money,” said Evans, whose side have slipped to fifth in the table.
The Scot has also thanked Dave Jones, the Sheffield Wednesday chief, for allowing his promotion-chasing squad to use the indoor facility at their Middlewood training ground.