Rotherham United manager Paul Warne was on iFollow Millers duty as the fight for Sky Bet Championship survival continues this weekend at West Bromwich Albion.
On the agenda was reflections on the Easter weekend, ongoing contract talks and three goals in three games for the improving Matt Crooks.
Full video content available shortly HERE on iFollow Millers…
Warne on Easter weekend results and performances…
“There are positives to take from both. We were excellent at Swansea and definitely deserved to get something and we were very good for 45 minutes at home, but they changed their shape and caused us problems second half that we didn't really have answers for.
“There is no excuse and their quality paid in the end.
“It's a disappointing result for us on Monday, that's for sure. It leaves us two games where we're still fighting and hopefully if we can pick something up and Millwall don't, then it might go to the last weekend.
“At half-time against Swansea, life was looking pretty good and then at half time at home to Birmingham we were 1-0 up and we'd have drawn ourselves level with Millwall.
“We didn't get anything from the game and we didn't deserve to in the end.”
Warne on not giving up on Sky Bet Championship survival…
“We dedicate our lives to this club and we're trying to do everything we can.
“If we fall short then that's on me, but we've tried to play the right way and tried to score goals in games and take points. I've been pretty proud of what we've done.
“Unfortunately at the moment, we're in the wrong side of the bottom three.”
Warne explains his side don’t intentionally ‘sit back’ to defend leads…
“In fairness, I'm the opposite of that because we've only kept about six clean sheets this year. We can't sit back and defend a lead. That isn't how we play.
“They caused us different problems at the start of the second half and the first goal should definitely have been stopped.
“We definitely do not sit back. Its two teams that make a football game not one. It isn't the fact that we sit back and that they come at us. It's how the waves and momentum swings.
Warne on his side’s continued ability to find the back of the net in games…
“We have been very good but unfortunately we haven't been the best at both ends.
“We could have taken more chances, we could have kept more clean sheets. Unfortunately we haven't had enough consistency at both ends to get us out of the bottom three.
Warne on the ever-improving Matt Crooks…
“I think he'll be very good next year especially. He's definitely got fitter. He said when he first came in the training intensity was a lot higher, which it is.
“The standard to jump two leagues is big, but you could argue he's jumped three because a lot of the players he's playing against are like Premier League lads.
“I think he'll be a constant goal threat for us going forwards. I'm really pleased with him and the more he plays, trains and understands what we want he'll go onto hopefully have an amazing career.
“It's alright us wanting to improve him, but the players have to want to meet us halfway and he definitely wants to get better.
“We try and polish up what he's very good at and we also try and bring up his standards on what he isn't.”
Warne on contract negotiations and an eye on the future in recruitment…
“I'm in constant conversation with Rob [Scott].
“Over the next week I'm hoping he's touched base with virtually all of the agents to find out exactly where we are.
“Some things are out of our control and players might want to go an play elsewhere or move on, but we'll try and keep the nucleus of this team together and improve it.
“I think every transfer window we've tried to, although I think last one was the most disappointing we've had I think. We really need to get it right again this summer.
“The transparency I get with Rob is really good, I see him all the time.
“He knows exactly what I want. I was talking to him about a player yesterday who looks like someone we may be able to get over the line. If I do lose players, which will obviously happen, we just have to get in ones that suit us.”
Warne on challenge of facing West Bromwich Albion this weekend…
“The last couple of games they've rested no end of their players.
“They're safely in the Play-offs but it's a difficult one. If it was me, I probably would have rested them over the last couple of weeks, but now, we're two games to go before the Play-offs start. I would probably get all my best XI back out so they're not rusty for the Play-offs.
“It's hard to guess what team it is but whatever team it is, it will be very strong.
“They're trying to bounce back to the Premier League.
“They'll want to put a show on in their last home game of their season and we've got to really try and play against them.
Warne on another ‘must win’ game…
“I don't think any team enjoys playing against us. They know we'll give our all and I think that's all our fans and supporters want.
“The last one was a 'must win' so this definitely is.
“The chances are slimmer than they were, but we'll give ourselves the best chance that we can if we can win on Saturday.
“As always, we'll go out to try and win the football match and with a bit of Lady Luck you never know.”