Paul Warne post-Birmingham City...
MILLERS boss Paul Warne admitted that his side’s 3-1 defeat at the hands of Birmingham City was a “missed opportunity” – with injury and tiredness taking the toll on his depleted squad.
Lukas Jutkiewicz’s hat-trick proved the difference between the sides at St Andrew’s – with sub Jon Taylor’s late strike proving scant consolation for Warne’s side, who remain pointless on the road this season, following their sixth straight defeat on their travels.
Speaking to the assembled press corps afterwards, Warne felt his side failed to make the most of their positive start in England’s second city – with Jutkiewicz’s first-half double putting the hosts in charge.
“I can’t give them the excuse for the first goal,” Warne admitted.
“We’ve been really good on set-pieces this season but we’ve conceded from one and for the second goal, it was a bit of a pinball one. For the first one, we don’t have to give the corner away and we need to be tighter on the marking. Marek (Rodak’s) been outstanding but he will be disappointed with that one. It’s a pity because I didn’t think we were in any danger at that point.”
Following the break, Jutkiewicz claimed the match ball with a well-taken third before Taylor struck, which prompted a late Millers rally – but the home side held on to record, just their second league win of the campaign.
With the Millers playing their second game in four days, Warne admitted that his injury-hit side were feeling the effects of their demanding Championship campaign, to date.
“It was not as good as we have been,” Warne added.
“Physically the lads gave me everything but they didn’t look as sharp as they have looked in recent weeks. I don’t think we got outplayed at all today. We just got a little bit outmuscled in both boxes which I don’t usually say about my team.
“I think playing on Wednesday night did take its toll and my team did look jaded today. A few of the senior pros looked tired at the end.
“We’ve had six or seven out for a while and I had a few that started that didn’t look fit. It was a game too far but it was an opportunity we wasted today. If we had come with a stronger team, I’m sure we would have got a more positive result.
“We have two weeks to get a few of the lads back for our next home game.”