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READ | Warne's pre-Gillingham highlights

28 April 2022

Rotherham United Manager Paul Warne spoke to the local media ahead of Saturday’s trip to face Gillingham in Sky Bet League One.

The Millers know that if they match MK Dons’ result at Plymouth at the weekend, they will be promoted to the Sky Bet Championship, but face a Gills side desperate for points of their own to avoid relegation from the division.

Warne spoke about his desire for the players to be rewarded for their efforts with the ultimate goal of promotion, but is under no illusions of the scale of the task his side face when they make the long journey south.

You can read highlights from the interview below, with full video content available HERE on iFollow Millers later today.

 

Warne on whether any nerves have set in ahead of a big weekend...

"We're okay. We're in pretty good fettle and we just want the game to start truth be told.

"Every game brings challenges and stresses and this is no different. I'm not normally doing a merry dance on the side of the pitch having a great time.

"It just ramps it up a little bit and it probably won't feel too dissimilar to the Cardiff game last year.

"We'll prepare them as well as we can and then it is like watching your children walk into school for the first time. They'll walk over the white line and there will be some random things that happen in the game, there will be rumours from other grounds and I know Gillingham want to win for survival."

 

 

Warne on whether the experience of Cardiff last season will help from a mindset viewpoint...

"I don't know really. I don't think it will. I'd like to come out with something really poignant but I don't think it will make much of a difference.

"They probably learned as much at Sunderland as they did at Cardiff last year - that everything matters.

Every tackle matters, every set piece matters and hopefully they'll be on the right side of the result.

"The only thing they probably learned from Cardiff is how long disappointment stays with you possibly."

 

Warne on the hotly-contested nature of the top end of the Sky Bet League One table this season...

"It's been a bit crazy. When you're a player or manager, you always try and look after your own game and then the first thing you do is look at the other scores.

"You're right, there has been results coming in and you're thinking 'oh wow'.

"We've been fortunate with results going our way at times and then not at others.

"You are constantly looking at the league table.

"I remember two or three months ago when we were nine points clear or something with 16 games left, football people were telling us we were in a really good position and we were. I knew how many points were to play for and you're thinking that the end of the season can't come quick enough for us because we were in such a good place.

"We had a little bit of a spell but I feel like we're out of it now. There's loads of other teams in really good spells.

"We've had to have a meeting with all of the staff about if the result doesn't go our way, how will the next week look in terms of training and everything else."

 

 

Warne on how much he would like to see this group of players and staff rewarded for their efforts throughout the season with promotion...

"That is definitely a strength and a weakness of mine really.

"I am emotionally involved with all of my players. I have a real connection with them, as I do my staff and we're a really close group.

"I want them to have that moment in time and that moment in history that they will remember forever and a moment in history.

"I want that for them. I'm not saying I don't want it for myself and my own family but I'm a boy from a small town in Norfolk and for me to have had the professional career that I have had and to get to where it is, has already been amazing.

"As good as we've been in recent years as a football club - and taking out the PPG covid-era - we haven't had an automatic promotion out of this league since Ronnie [Moore] had the dream team 20 years ago.

"I think it would be even more enjoyable because of the quality of the league this year."

 

Warne on a packed out away end and his words for the supporters who have stood by his side throughout the season...

"I would just like to say thanks for all the support this year really.

"The people who have really supported the team. I think the true supporters are the ones who support the team, not just when you're winning, that's easy, but when they stay and clap the team off when they've lost or drawn.

"I feel like there's a really good relationship between our players and our fans. 

"I remember at Portsmouth away - when we got absolutely smoked - the amount of fans who stayed to clap the players off the pitch.

"To be a fan of anything isn't 100% adulation all the time, I understand that, but I think our fans have a real understanding of where we are, where we're trying to be and they appreciate our efforts."

 


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