Rotherham United: No shocks as Paul Warne begins shaping his squad for League One

There were few surprises as Rotherham United said goodbye to five players after announcing their retained list.

Thursday, 16th May 2019, 11:08 am
Updated Thursday, 16th May 2019, 4:15 pm
Darren Potter

Darren Potter, David Ball, Dominic Ball, Alex Bray and Emmanuel Onariase were all released at the end of their contracts.

Millers boss Paul Warne had four easy decisions and one tough one to make, as he considered handing Potter a fresh deal.

The 34-year-old midfielder spent much of his two seasons at the club in the treatment room as he battled a troublesome Achilles injury.

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Indeed, his substitute appearance in the Millers' final game of the season against Middlesbrough was his first since December 17.

Despite that lengthy absence Warne did mull over the possibility of keeping him owing to his performances in League One in 2017-18, before injury struck.

However, the former Sheffield Wednesday man leaves having played only 19 times for the club.

The rest of the decisions were all easy for Warne to make given they all spent time away from the club on loan recently.

David Ball spent much of the campaign on loan at Bradford and was unable to help them beat the drop, scoring only seven goals in 43 appearances in all competitions.

Warne might have briefly pondered giving the striker a fresh chance given his contribution to promotion last time they club were in League One, but the boss decided against it.

Dominic Ball leaves having spent two-and-a-half seasons of his three-year contract out on loan – two at Aberdeen – and his exit was a foregone conclusion.

Youngsters Bray and Onariase were products of former head of recruitment Jamie Johnson's scouting network, but neither never threatened a breakthrough into the team.

Bray spent time out on loan at York and Weston Super-Mare this season and leaves having made just one start and eight substitute appearances in a red and white shirt while defender Onariase earned just two Checkatrade Trophy starts for the club.

Goalkeeper Laurence Bilboe was offered a new deal, despite never having played for the club.

The 21-year-old's first professional deal came to an end and, having spent time on loan at Havant and Waterlooville last season, earns a stay until 2020.

Elsewhere, defender Semi Ajayi has been named in Nigeria's provisional squad for the African Nations Cup this summer.