Rotherham United: Warne reveals his transfer thinking for next season

Boss Paul Warne will keep faith with the transfer policy that has thrust Rotherham United into League One promotion contention no matter what division the Millers find themselves in next season.

Friday, 23rd March 2018, 2:03 pm
Updated Friday, 23rd March 2018, 2:10 pm
Paul Warne

With only nine games of the regular campaign left, Warne’s men are in fourth place and looking good to secure a place in the play-offs.

The manager admits not knowing what the league the Millers will be operating in next term is a complication, but says the type of new recruits he wants will remain the same.

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Warne, who side are at Southend United tomorrow, will consider only players who are willing to give everything and who have age on their side.

“There’s no point me signing a 32-year-old who’s had his day,” he said. “We’ll do what we’ve tried to do this season really: sign young, hungry people.

“If we went up, I’d still go for a similar type of player. By going up a league, we might be able to get young, hungry people with a bit more quality.

January recruit Michael Smith

“I don’t have a Harrods shopping list and a Sainsbury’s one. The names are all on one list.”

Warne has been a busy man in the transfer market since becoming full-time boss last April and signings like winger Ryan Williams, midfielder Richie Towell, strikers Kieffer Moore, David Ball and Michael Smith, centre-half Semi Ajayi, goalkeeper Marek Rodak and right-back Josh Emmanuel have all worked out.

Centre-forward Jamie Proctor was looking at snip at £75,000 before suffering cruciate knee ligament damage and midfield man Matt Palmer is starting to show his worth after his Jnauary arrival.

Of all Warne’s signings, only experienced midfielder Darren Potter has been the wrong side of 30.

“Not knowing what division we’re going to be in does complicate things quite a bit,” the boss said. “There are positions where we need to strengthen. Our budget will obviously be different if we go up a league.

“I’m not saying my targets will be different. Say I’m going for two centre-forwards, one might really want Championship football. I can’t offer him that until I know what’s happening.”

Meanwhile, Warne had praised the versatility of midfield man Will Vaulks who played at right-back earlier in the season and is set to feature in central defence against the Shrimpers after impressing there in last Saturday’s 3-0 win at Northampton Town.

“I like him at centre-half, I like him in centre mid, I like him at right-back and I’d like him if he played at left-back,” Warne said. “Wherever he plays, he gives his job lot.

January recruit Michael Smith

“At Northampton, he distributed out of the back really well. In the middle of the park, he’s a bit of a driving force. But he definitely also has the attributes to be a very good centre-half.

“I don’t know if he’s got his heart in being a centre-half, but it’s about what’s best for the team. If he needs to play there for now, he wlll.”