Ipswich vs Rotherham preview
Last Updated: 11/01/19 2:24pm
Ipswich are set to hand veteran Wales defender James Collins a debut against fellow Championship strugglers Rotherham.
The former West Ham centre-back, a free agent, has signed a short-term deal after training with the Tractor Boys. Winger Simon Dawkins and striker Collin Quaner, on loan from Huddersfield, should be involved following their completed moves to Suffolk.
Ipswich, who are bottom of the table, have no fresh injury concerns, with Emyr Huws and Cole Skuse close to a return from respective knee problems. Fellow midfielders Tom Adeyemi (Achilles) and Grant Ward (knee) remain long-term absentees.
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Rotherham return to Championship action following their FA Cup thrashing at Manchester City looking to keep themselves out of the relegation zone. Forward Kyle Vassell is fit again after being out since late November with a groin problem.
Joe Newell (groin) is doubtful, while fellow midfielder Richie Towell serves out his three-match suspension. Forward Jamie Proctor faces another potential lengthy spell of rehabilitation with his own groin problem. Forward Jerry Yates has been recalled from a loan spell at Carlisle and defender Ben Purrington has joined Charlton until the end of the season after returning from his stint at AFC Wimbledon.
Ipswich have lost four of their last six league matches against Rotherham (W1 D1), losing the last two 0-1 in April 2017 and August 2018.
Rotherham have won two of their last 11 league visits to Ipswich (D4 L5).
Ipswich boss Paul Lambert has won just two of his last 25 league matches as a manager (D10 L13), winning just once as Ipswich manager in 11 attempts (D3 L7).
Each of Rotherham's last 10 victories in the Championship have been by a single goal margin, last winning by more than one goal in the competition back in April 2016 (4-0 v MK Dons).
Converting three points for a win, each of the last 10 sides in the second tier to have accrued no more than Ipswich's current tally of 15 points from 26 matches have gone on to be relegated - most recently Stockport County in 2001/02.
Will Vaulks has been directly involved in five of Rotherham's last nine league goals, scoring three while assisting a further two.
Ipswich have reached the point of no return now. Any enthusiasm that may have been building under Paul Lambert has been quelled by three defeats in a row and they are now 10 points adrift of safety.
Rotherham are the team just above the relegation zone, and this is a must-win for both. For that reason, I can see both being reluctant to open up. Draw for me.
David Prutton predicts: 0-0 (8/1 with Sky Bet)