EFL questions and answers: Rotherham, Richard Wood talks to Wembley, being a leader and playing against Dean Windass

As if Rotherham's captain, Richard Wood, needed some reminder of his career at Wembley in May, a quick look at the opposition dugout on Saturday should be enough.

Ipswich Town visitors would certainly have a new manager different from Paul Hurst if Wood had not denied his former club Shrewsbury Town the two goals that earned Rotherham promotion to the Championship instead of the League One play-off final .

Wood, 33, describes his Wembley masterpiece as his best day in the game in our first Sky Bet EFL Q & A about the new season.

The former Sheffield Wednesday defender, Coventry and Charlton compare his playing style to that of former England hero Terry Butcher and appoints Pep Guardiola as the manager he would most like to play for.

Rotherham captain Richard Wood with the League One play-off trophy at Wembley

Rotherham captain Richard Wood with the League One play-off trophy at Wembley

Rotherham captain Richard Wood with the League One play-off trophy at Wembley

Describe yourself in the field in 3 words

A leader. Strong. No fear, because I throw myself on if there is a ball to win, even if they break me.

Describe out of tune in 3 words

Relaxed. Self-critical Studious.

The best moment of your career so far?

It has to be Wembley a couple of months ago. It will be a day I will never forget. I had the play-off final of League One with Sheffield Wednesday in Cardiff a few years ago (a 4-2 victory in overtime over Hartlepool). I did not score in that, but that was the highlight until I scored two in Wembley, and this one was also in front of my children, which is what it is about.

It took me a good few weeks to realize what I had done. I went on vacation right away and even on vacation I had to go some people, congratulate me and say that it was well done, and that it had not yet sunk.

It was only when I came back and started thinking about this season that it sank and I realized how big it was and it is for Rotherham. I'll be in the history books, which I'm pretty proud of.

Rotherham players celebrate after defeating Shrewsbury to win the League One promotion

Rotherham players celebrate after defeating Shrewsbury to win the League One promotion

Rotherham players celebrate after defeating Shrewsbury to win the League One promotion

The first goal was the best goal, a good header, while the second one came off the field. It was nice to celebrate the first with all the fans of Rotherham, but the second one stood out more for being the winner in the extra time and the feeling that you get from that.

Somehow I knew I was going to be the winner and then I just thought about my children who were sitting on the tunnel. That's why I ran there to see their faces. I do not know how I ran so fast, I had never done it before.

I played the game with a broken finger too, I broke it in the first half, but every feeling, every pain disappears when the adrenaline kicks in that way. You do not care about the pain when you score. My toe is still sore, but I'm fine to play it.

Who is the hardest opponent you have faced?

Dean Windass. It's strange because you would normally say he's the best player, but it's because I was younger at that time too. He is not the greatest, but he just did everything, cut me off, stood on tiptoe, abused me all the game, in my ear, just a constant plague. That's how he felt at that moment anyway, but obviously he was a good experienced player. It was horrible to play against. Not well.

It was while I was in Bradford, so I would have been in my teens or 20 years. I knew what I was doing, I knew how to disturb the children, which I was. I would say that it affected my performance. I came a little to the head, but I learned a lot from that, I learned not to get involved and just play my own game. Since then, other players have tried, but I ignored them.

The most embarrassing moment in football?

I do not have many because I do not think there is anything to be ashamed of. If you make mistakes, you make mistakes.

I've scored a couple of goals of my own, so I'll probably say that Doncaster was out last season. We drew everything, scored a goal on own goal and also on Sky.

A cross came in, I put my leg running towards the goal and flew. But these things happen and I'm not the kind of person who is easily embarrassed.

What song puts you in the mood for a game?

I'm not in charge of music at Rotherham. We have Joe Mattock and Will Vaulks who have a playlist. They like house music, so we have all of that put on, but if I had the chance to wear something, it would probably be 90s music. That shows my age because I'm one of the oldest in the locker room. I like Oasis and Kings of Leon. And you talk about embarrassing moments, I also like Beautiful South.

What is your guilty pleasure food?

To be fair, I have a good metabolism so I can eat what I want, but I have a sweet tooth so it always has to be a dessert. A cheesecake or a crumble. Rhubarb crumble and flan. And it has to be custard, it can not be ice cream. I'm a kid from North Yorkshire, so I like my flan.

I would also say a Chinese meal as a gift on a Saturday night after a game. A special sauce of black beans and rice.

Which player in history would you like to play next to, and why?

The person that everyone compares me for a few years is Terry Butcher. That iconic image of him with bandage and blood everywhere also represents what I've been through in my career. He cuts every week and plays with bandages, so I think the two of us playing together would be feared by everyone.

It would be chaos. We would be looking everywhere and the physio would be on constantly.

But then someone with whom I would have liked to play because of how good a defender I was is Rio Ferdinand. A Rolls-Royce defender and I would have enjoyed playing with him if I had the chance.

What famous manager would you have liked to play, and why?

Pep Guardiola There's a new documentary about him where I've seen a trailer, I've also seen videos of how he talks, how he talks to players and what he does for them. It simply treats people as adequate human beings. He seems perfect as a man-manager. It will support players in everything they do, and that is why it is in Man City. I do not think it's going to happen, but I'd love to play for him.

With him, it's not just about football, it's about life itself. He talks about how to act outside the field, to be respectful and that sums it up. He handles everything with each individual player.

Our manager in Rotherham, Paul Warne, also has that kind of focus and I think that's why we have such a good team spirit. We have good genuine boys in the dressing room. That's what we want. We do not want any egos. That's what the foreman wants and how he finds himself.

We recently did something where we brought a picture of someone who inspires him to do what he does. The players were bringing pictures of people who had passed away: their grandmother, grandfather, family members. I brought a picture of my children. Other boys did too. You had to stand individually and talk about your circumstances and what inspires you.

It's good to meet everyone because you would not normally do that in a dressing room. Everyone has their own life away from football and people keep it away sometimes. They come and you have the courage of the guys who give you the big one all the time, but the foreman says it's good to know certain things about the players individually and their families. Normally you would not do that, but it has recently come to light. When certain players stood up and talked, they played many players. I get excited anyway because I have children. The gaffer does it, too. It has united us a little more.

What would you be if you were not a footballer?

I recently studied journalism, but I would not have chosen journalism before entering football. I would definitely have gone to college, because I did well in my GCSE. I did my A Levels in Mathematics and Chemistry when I was a scholar, so I would have continued.

I'm not sure what I would have gotten myself into, maybe sports science. I have always been a sports person, so I really liked the idea of ​​being a physiotherapist, but I have never been able to do the courses. I did the journalism degree and that intrigued me, so maybe I would like to deepen that after my career.

Tell us a secret that fans will not know …

There is not much to know about me. I have opened a play center for children with my wife, but that has been publicized, so I will say that I played in old Wembley with the Twin Towers when I was 11 years old.

I played for my Wakefield district team in an adidas Predator tournament when the first pair of Predators came out. Adidas sponsored the tournament. We won the regional tournament in Newcastle to represent the north of England and we have to play the final before an England Under-21 game, I think. We stayed at the Hilton next to Wembley as well. We all have a couple of predators and to watch the game of England

I'm sure there are a lot of people who have played as much in the old as in the new Wembley, but maybe not many who still play.

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