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READ | Warne's pre-Oxford United press highlights

9 January 2020

Rotherham United manager Paul Warne took the time to preview the trip to Oxford United in Sky Bet League One...

The Millers boss spoke to iFollow Millers about his side's points tally over the festive period, the team gelling, Carlton Morris' recall and the club's potential transfer activity in the January window.

The video content will be available to watch here on iFollow Millers shortly.

Warne on festive points accumulation...

"The lads have done really well but then we had the disappointment of the FA Cup. We're on a good run and sometimes you need the bounce of a ball, or a little bit of luck. To score late on at Shrews set us off in the 97th minute and then for Dan Barlaser to hit the only one [free kick] he's taken in the goal helps.

"We had a little bit of luck, don't get me wrong but I think we were due some. The lads have taken a lot of confidence from those games and we now move into another tough month."

Warne assesses team 'gelling'...

"I think it is always nice when you don't have to make loads of changes. Over the Christmas period we didn't because the team was performing well. 

"It does take a lot of time to get the group together but they understand how we want to play and I think they've done really well in recent weeks. We've changed the system a little bit, not a great deal, we were 4-4-1-1 and now it is a bit more of a 'two strikers' system. 

"It is the same principles in pretty much everything else and we're pleased with where we're at."

Warne on Morris recall...

"I sent him a text the day after he left and the lads applauded his contribution in the changing room after the game against Hull.

"In fairness to Carlton, when I signed him, I did so with the intentions of playing him. It was just the fact that in the end I managed to keep hold of Vass and Smudge and get Freddie in, so the competition was pretty fierce.

"Unfortunately for Carlton, he can play another position. He did really well for me out wide left and took one for the team. It is sad to see him go, I wasn't jumping for joy when it was decided but I understand it as well and like I said to him, maybe our careers will meet again in the future."

Warne on Robertson injury...

"He's having his operation today so he should be back on the field in hopefully about five weeks. I've written this month off and it will be the later part of February that he will be back in the squad I hope."

Warne's general injury update...

"He's [Billy Jones] has got another three weeks. He had a little bit of a complication with his but hopefully he'll be back then.

"Obviously Thommo [Adam Thompson] is missing three games [through suspension] and Joe Mattock has another to miss.

"At this rate, Crooksy may have to play centre half again.

"He [Shaun MacDonald] joins in squad training next week and will be available again then. He is pretty close to it. It is possibly a couple of days too soon to join him in today but it will be good to have him back."

Warne on potential incomings...

"Hopefully we can announce someone today. I still think we might need some more defensive cover, we just need to see how we get through this weekend.

"We might need another option up top. Whether that is one of our players who is out on loan or someone fresh, we'll have to wait and see.

Warne on Jerry Yates situation...

"I'm not in regular contact, like every day, but we are in contact. 

"I don't know if anyone has mentioned it but Jerry is banging them in for Swindon. I'm well-aware of how well he's doing and I know what he can do for the team.

"We'll monitor them both and we've got the duration of the window to make a decision."

Warne on upcoming Oxford United test...

"I thought they were the best team we played [in the reverse fixture].

"However, I don't think we were at our best so you never really know. Most of the other managers in the league think the same, so they're probably going for one of the automatic slots.

"The way they play is different to us obviously, so it is two different styles. I think their style causes us problems as I think ours will them.

"We definitely go into the game as we try to in all of them. At the moment, we're second and we've only won 10 out of 20-odd games. We try to win as many games as we can but it will be no different Saturday, in that I'm not going to draw, we'll set up to try and win.

"We'll try and take the game to them but they are a very good team, in very good form. 

"They've signed three very good players this week who I expect to be in the matchday squad. They are a formidable side but if you're going to have a successful season you have to play the best teams and make something happen.


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