At the time of year when it’s all about giving, Rotherham United have had one of their best presents taken away.
Nouha Dicko, who has just scored in five successive games, has been recalled by Wigan Athletic at the end of his first month on loan.
It is a big blow for the Millers as Dicko, with his pace and mobility, had made quite an impact and particularly so with his goals.
His two on Saturday made it six in six appearances. He made a non-scoring appearance as a sub for his debut in a goalless draw with Carlisle United but had since started the last five games and scored in them all.
However, he was recalled yesterday by new Wigan boss Uwe Rosler who recently left Rotherham’s League One rivals Brentford, both clubs in a Play-off spot.
There is no disguising the fact it is a setback for Rotherham judged on the impact that Dicko has had and there were suggestions that Rotherham might have considered seeking to turn it into a permanent deal come January or, at the very least, extend the loan which was due to run out on January 11.
Asked after Saturday’s game with Wolves about the possibility of Dicko being signed permanently, Millers manager Steve Evans said: “I don’t know” adding: “If he goes (back) then we’ll get someone else.”
He still has Matt Tubbs among his striking options but he wasn’t on the bench on Saturday and he hasn’t been able to make the impact so far that was expected when he joined on loan from Bournemouth in August.
Meanwhile, the Millers head for Bradford City on Boxing Day backed by 2,500 fans, with manager Steve Evans knowing he has to make at least one change but having said he would be changing the side anyway. On Saturday he gave Haris Vuckic his first start.
Bradford will be without key central defender Rory McArdle through a one-match ban.