Survival is tougher now than ever before, says Rotherham United boss
Rotherham manager Paul Warne knows a thing or two about keeping the club in the Championship against the odds.
Warne was an integral part of Ronnie Moore's famous side which held their second-tier status for four seasons in the early 2000s.
Much like this current crop, the Millers were not expected to last long back then as they battled against a disparity in resources and took on some of the big names in the game.
But Warne reckons the task of keeping the club at this level is even tougher now and it would eclipse anything that has happened before.
“When we stayed up in the Championship as a player there were always two or three other teams, one year we had Stockport, Crewe,” Warne told the Star.
“If we were to stay up and Ipswich, Bolton, and whoever (go down), these are all proper Championship teams.
“It's not like we have beaten three teams who have just come up.
“I think the league is a lot harder now, in those days there weren't balloon payments for the Premier League lads, so the level playing field was a little bit closer.
“Even when we played the likes of Manchester City, it wasn't like we couldn't get near them.
“I think the league is a lot harder now than it was then.
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“But when we stayed up a few years ago under Steve (Evans) and Neil (Warnock) the achievement was pretty massive, but this would eclipse all of them.”
For the Millers to do that, Warne reckons they will need to take seven points from their remaining four games, starting with the Good Friday trip to Swansea.
With four points separating them with Wigan, Millwall and Reading it seems entirely likely that the Millers' survival fate could come down to the final-day game against Middlesbrough.
“If you offered it to me now, would I take it going down to the last game then I would because we are in the worst position,” Warne added.
“It would be good if we could take it to the last game.
“I said to the lads at the start of the season everyone said that we were never going to stay up.
“The feeling that they will have if we do stay up will be irreplaceable – those moments in life are.
“They are not based on finance or anything like that, they are driven by the achievement of it all.
“If it did go to the last game and we did have a Disney ending then I would be very pleased.”