Rotherham United boss Paul Warne issues survival message after stunning Middlesbrough win

Rotherham boss Paul Warne hopes his side can use their stunning 3-0 win at promotion-chasing Middlesbrough as a platform for a survival mission.

Thursday, 28th January 2021, 4:27 pm

The Millers produced their biggest away win the Championship since April 2016 when goals from Matt Crooks, Michael Smith and Ryan Giles brought home the points.

Ironically, Middlesbrough manager Neil Warnock was in charge of Rotherham that day, but he could only watch as his former side ran riot at the Riverside in their most dominant day for some time.

The win, a second in three outings, puts the Millers two points from safety with games in hand having played half of the season.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Rotherham United striker Matt Crooks scores the Millers' first goal in the 3-0 win over Middlesbrough at the Riverside last night. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Warne knows an improvement is required in the final 23 matches, but his side have set a marker now.

“In the bottom seven, we have won two out of five, there are two that have won three out of five,” he said. “We just have to keep it going.

“Currently we are 23 games in and we have 23 points. So if we do the same again we are down so we have to keep pushing standards to get more points in the second half of the season and I believe we will.

“We were fortunate to have a real long pre-season, we have been unlucky with injuries but we have got our best players coming back so it could be an interesting end to the season.

“However, I know what football is like. We could lose Saturday, we could get punched in the face and everything is looking grim again.

“But it is a really good win away from home in the Championship and it is a real good day for us.”

The front two of Crooks and Smith, who have scored eight goals in the last six games between them, caused Boro all sorts of problems.

“They are great but don't write they are too great, they will get sold,” Warne joked.

“I ask the lads to be relentless and if they were at their absolute best tonight I thought they would win.

“I thought we would be too athletic. We didn't play at the weekend, I thought we would be a little bit fresher than them and it paid really.

“All in all a good night and it was definitely led by the front two.”