Paul Warne post-Blackburn Rovers...
Rotherham United boss Paul Warne expressed his pride at the battling spirit shown by his side which saw them conjure up a late fightback to earn a point against high-flying Blackburn Rovers on New Year’s Day.
David Ball was once again the hero as he struck late on to cancel out Bradley Dack’s opener and maintain the Millers unbeaten run, taking the streak to six without defeat over the festive period.
Despite a fixture-heavy few days over Christmas and the New Year which has seen Warne’s men play four times in just over a week, the Millers rallied until the end and were rewarded for doing so with Ball’s 89th minute leveller.
"I'm really proud today,” the Millers boss beamed after the game.
“I thought that the lads played well. Obviously we have some tired legs and a few out, but that's no excuse.
“I thought that we set up really well and were difficult to break down. There was a goalmouth clearance in the first half where the lads all threw their bodies on the line, but apart from that I didn't really think they would score.
“There were a few set pieces here and there, and if there was a little bit of luck our way we could have nicked it. I thought that second half it was a really good open game. It was end-to-end and they took their chance.”
The Millers revival was helped in the second half by the introductions of Joe Newell and Jonson Clarke-Harris before a late shift also saw Semi Ajayi join the attack for the final few minutes.
Warne continued to admit that even if his side had been unable to find a way back into the game, he would still have been pleased with the battling showing against one of Sky Bet League One’s frontrunners.
“We didn't have enough effect in the first 15 minutes of the second half so we changed it, and the subs had a positive impact.
“We had numerous corners and free-kicks and I just thought it was just going to be one of them days.
“I think if we would have come off losing 1-0 I would have still been really proud of the team. I've asked them to give me everything over the Christmas period and they have definitely done that.
“The fact they have got a goal so late on, there was a part of me that thought that we would go on and win it. We changed the pack a couple of times. I put Semi up as a three, and took Woody off to allow Will to play as two for two at the back, and it worked. It got us a goal and on another day we might have nicked it. I was really proud of the boys.”