Angry boss Paul Warne has challenged his players to speak up after accusing some of them of ‘hiding’ in Rotherham United’s latest Championship defeat.
The caretaker manager felt let down as Tuesday’s 2-0 loss against promotion-chasing Brighton left the division’s bottom club 19 points from safety with only 10 matches left to play.
And he told his squad to be braver than they were in the second half at New York Stadium when they gathered today to watch a re-run of the Seagulls clash.
“I said a few harsh words,” he revealed in the wake of two goals after the break condemning the Millers to their ninth defeat in 10 games. “You can’t always sugercoat everything.
“We’ll meet in the morning, we’ll watch the game together and hopefully some people will have something they want to say, which will be fine with me. I just want 11 lads who want to play.
“With 20 minutes to go, a few hid, which is a regrettable thing to say. We’ll watch the video and see how we can improve.”
Injury-hit Rotherham, who travel to struggling Wolves on Saturday, matched high-flying Albion in the first half and had chances to take the lead but fell away as the visitors applied the pressure.
“I don’t want the season to just fizzle out into lack-lustre performances,” Warne said. “I don’t think the fans or myself deserve that. I work really hard to try to get this team to win football matches.
“The lads lack confidence, and professional sport is as much about pyschology as it it physiology. They really dropped as a group with 20 minutes to go, which is sad.
“I’ve said to them: ‘Every game, whether you win, lose or draw, if you perform to a level, I’ll always shake your hand, I’ll always be proud of you.’
“But a few of them let themselves down. I’ve got to motivate them for Saturday now and see who I have available.”
The Millers are hoping striker Danny Ward, one of nine potential first-teamers to miss the Brighton match, will be available for the trip to Molineux, while loan centre-forward Carlton Morris is due to arrive from Norwich City this week.