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POST MATCH | Millers punished for missed chances - Warne

2 January 2017

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Paul Warne post Leeds United...

Rotherham United interim manager Paul Warne was left to rue goals conceded at the start of the second-half, as the Millers failed to capitalise on a positive first 45 in a 3-0 defeat to Leeds United.

The Millers largely silenced a capacity home crowd with a impressive first-half display at Elland Road, with Izzy Brown going closest as Warne’s side carved out the better openings.

After the break Kyle Bartley headed the hosts in front just after the interval, with Chris Wood bagging a brace to end any hopes for the Millers.

Warne admitted he was heartened by the first-half performance, but went on to say that errors cost his side from getting anything from the game.

“I thought that we were excellent in the first half,” Warne said after the game.

“I didn’t put the bus in front of the goal, we played 4-4-1-1 and we came to win the game. I have been trying to be positive with the lads, trying to give them confidence on the ball. I told them these are great places to play, and the more that the crowd boo, the better it will be for us. I thought that we did well in the first-half, and to go in 0-0 was a bit of an injustice to us.”

The Millers played with fluidity and created opportunities in the opening 45 minutes, but Warne revealed that the goal just after the break broke up his side’s momentum.

“We created loads, and I felt really comfortable in the game,” he added.

“I would go as far as saying that I enjoyed the way we played. There looked to be confidence throughout, we played out from the back at times, and all the players wanted the ball. Half-time came, and I said that it didn’t count for anything because second-half they will come out stronger, so we have to keep our concentration levels up and keep playing the same way. Obviously to concede from a corner when one of our players left their man, and to concede like that at a place like this – straight away that takes the pressure off the home team. It was a psychological blow for my players because they didn’t deserve that. The second half didn’t go as well, the lads gave me everything but unfortunately the goals changed the game.

“I am not going to stand here and slaughter my players individually. They both know that they could have done better in both situations. I pick the team, so I take responsibility, but the goals were avoidable. They get one or two chances and they score, and we get one or two chances and we don’t score. They are the fine margins at this level.”

To compound matters for Warne, the Millers lost captain Lee Frecklington to an ankle injury before the end, but the caretaker boss remains optimistic over his fitness.

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