sport

Evans: We are underdogs

Steve Evans believes Rotherham will have to be at their best to progress past Preston in the League One play-off semi-final.

The Millers head to Deepdale for Saturday's first leg as underdogs despite finishing above North End in the table, a tag that Evans is only too happy to hang on to.

"They are the favourites and I don't think any manager in League One would say any different," he said.

"They have a manager who has ran the course in the play-offs and they have a number of players who are top, top class for League One, if anything they are probably disappointed they didn't go up automatically.

"Simon Grayson will probably think that Preston will need to play well to beat us whereas I think we need to be at our best to beat them over two games and that's the difference.

"This is a huge task to beat them I'm not going to kid anyone about that. This is a big game for us."

However, the Millers will be buoyed by a superb campaign in League One which saw them record their best results on the road since the 1950s.

During his tenure in South Yorkshire and particularly at his former club Crawley, Evans has been renowned for getting his team up for the big games.

And he does not expect his squad to let him down.

"We have handled them, we have players who go on the front foot when the big games come," the Scot added.

"If you look at the bulk of the big games the players have performed with real credit."

History also favours the Millers as Preston hold the record for the most unsuccessful play-off campaigns with eight, never having gone up that way, but Evans does not read too much into that.

"Their play-off record is poor but we have broken a lot of records this year," he said. "I believe that records are there to be broken, so their history doesn't mean anything."