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READ | Warne's pre-Bolton Wanderers press highlights

16 September 2021

Rotherham United boss Paul Warne took time out of his Thursday morning schedule to talk to iFollow Millers ahead of the upcoming trip to Bolton Wanderers this weekend.

There was plenty to discuss ahead of Saturday's journey across to the University of Bolton Stadium including reflections on an excellent performance in midweek, an update on the absent Shane Ferguson and Wes Harding, praise for Ollie Rathbone and Michael Smith and what to expect from our hosts at Bolton Wanderers.

The highlights are below and full video content will be available to view shortly, HERE.

 

Warne on Lincoln reflections...

"The performance was really good but we were obviously disappointed with the goal that we conceded. We didn't really have to jump out of the back line, but it was a very well-worked goal from them.

"Apart from that, I thought we were excellent and there were some really, really good displays.

"We had their goal under siege and I think we had something like 26 attempts.

"I don't think we can do a lot more without scoring a second goal and winning it really.

"It was one of those days where you don't get what you deserve, however, we'll probably win games that we don't deserve to, so it will hopefully level itself out.

"I think we all came away from it feeling good about ourselves but also disappointed that it felt like two points dropped."

 

Warne on whether Ollie Rathbone has been even better than expected after his summer signing...

"We've liked him for a while and never really thought we'd be able to get him.

"It was more coincidence and a bit of fortune for us - which I know sounds awful - but Rochdale's outcome of their season last year meant we thought we might be able to prize him out of there.

"The energy he has shown in games he did against us in pre-season. He caused our midfield mayhem by playing in front and behind the lines, getting on it [the ball].

"He was really good the other night and a driving force. 

"We're fortunate as a club that he didn't break his leg, as I thought the challenge on him was horrendous.

"I don't think Ollie is better than what we thought, but I think that is him in a nutshell and I am just pleased that he's been able to play at his best and hopefully the fans can see why we brought him to the club."

 

Warne on Rathbone's energy levels...

"We don't take credit for them but we try and take credit for maintaining them.

"He came in as a really fit lad, as soon as he'd done his lactates and his mile-run here the lads were impressed with his time straight away.

"He hasn't taken loads of manipulating and training. He's in really good shape and he knows how to play football. He's really enthusiastic and he's a good kid, so he suits us down to the ground."

 

Warne on Michael Smith's start to the 2021/22 campaign...

"The only thing stopping Smudge from getting the headlines every week is probably the goals but I think he could have had 10.

"I'm pleased for him, but I also think he should score every week. That's the job of a striker.

"It's a good start for Smudge and he just has to keep it up."

 

Warne on attacking options...

"Ever since I've known this football club, we've always had really good strikers and we've had some greats over the years.

"The way we play with two up front, it is easy to sign a striker for this club because they do get loads of opportunities - we do get the ball in the box and we do cross it.

"We are blessed that we have good strikers and there are a lot of quality strikers in the league this year, but our four are four that would suit any team I think."

 

Warne on Shane Ferguson injury...

"He's on the grass today with the physio but it is one of those niggly things.

"It is one of those injuries that if you played, you probably wouldn't feel it as much but when you start doing your rehab and your running you're just so conscious of your injury. 

"We'll see how he is today and we're hopeful that on a beautiful sunny day in Yorkshire he feels good and then he can play a part in the match prep tomorrow."

 

Warne on Wes Harding's situation...

"He'll be available for the game this weekend.

"It is very frustrating but as I alluded to at the start of the interview, Covid will throw a few curveballs all season-long."

 

Warne on team news...

"The only injury issue is Freddie who has a problem on the arch of his foot I think.

"He's getting a scan today to see how that is but he is in a bit of pain.

"I would suggest he might be a doubt but until we know the outcome of the scan, I don't honestly know.

"Everybody else has no issues and they'll all be on the grass with me today."

 

Warne on Bolton Wanderers...

"Bolton's history is there for everyone to read but they've come back and they're a big club in this league.

"I don't think anyone has underestimated them in football and they've made some good signings in the summer again.

"I think the top teams in League Two always do well when they get promoted. The step up from League Two to League One isn't the same as the other two steps I don't think.

"They've started off really confidently and they have a style of play that he's recruited well for."


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