Millers manager Paul Warne addressed the media after today’s 2-1 defeat against Norwich City at the AESSEAL New York Stadium.
“I’m quite proud,” said Warne. “If Norwich have their best day and we have our best day, we’re always going to struggle. They’re a formidable side but I thought our lads were great. It’s easy to say when you’ve won.
“I’ve shook hands with all the Norwich players and 75 per cent of them told me we deserved more out of the game and I’ve told the lads that. With eight games to go, if we can keep that level of performance up we can collect enough points to have an amazing season.
“I’m an emotional guy and when I was speaking to the lads I broke down a little bit. I asked them to perform at a level that makes us really proud and I am proud to be their manager. I thought they were excellent and going a goal down right on the stroke of half-time, it was a bit of a hammer-blow because I felt we’d played well.
“The disappointment of the game for me was to concede on a set-piece. That, fundamentally, changed the game.”
Semi Ajayi took his goals tally to six in five matches with Rotherham’s goal this afternoon, but it wasn’t enough to secure at least a deserved point, as Norwich’s Kenny McLean and Ben Godfrey were on target for the Canaries.
“Semi’s brought us back into the game,” continued Warne. “He’s broken up play and he’s improved no-end over the last 12 months.
“Billy Jones came on in midfield at QPR in midweek and just knows when to do certain things like break up play or give a cheeky foul away. In fairness, Zak at right-back was excellent. I have no complaints about anyone in the team. Especially first-half, I thought Wilesy and Crooksy caused all sorts of problems.
“I can’t ask a lot more out of the performances. I know all fans who listen to me would want us to have 75 points, unfortunately that isn’t the case! Performances are good – we need to rest some of the players like Smithy who is jaded. It’s too much to ask so the international break will do them some good.
“Next week we’ll train Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday then give them four days off. They deserve it. Then we have eight cup finals.”