From Covid-19 cases to significant injury issues and even the inclement weather – and now they face a Derby side whose spirits have been provided with a transformation of hope with the news that Wayne Rooney has finally been appointed as the club’s full-time manager.
The former Manchester United, Everton and England legend has called time on a glittering playing career to concentrate fully on management – with Millers assigned with spoiling the coronation in today’s relegation ‘six-pointer.’
The degree of difficulty has increased a notch by the appointment of Rooney, with the home players afforded a psychological fillip after the club’s inglorious FA Cup exit at non-league Chorley.
Warne said: “Under Rooney’s regime, they have been very difficult to play against. They were the in-form side prior to us playing them at home before that game was cancelled (before Christmas).
“I have watched a lot of their games and although they were on the losing side at Sheffield Wednesday, they could have had a penalty in the last minute and three-nil up by half-time.
“Every team in this league are difficult and I don’t believe that Derby will be in the position they see themselves in now come the end of season.
“But as it stands, for everyone outside of our football club, this is a ‘must-win’ bottom of the table clash, but all our games are ‘must win’.
For Warne, the challenge is made even tougher by not knowing how Derby will line-up after their entire senior squad were in isolation for the Cup loss at Chorley due to Covid issues.
The Millers chief added; “We are presuming that (Martyn) Waghorn is back from suspension, although we do not know if he is one of the players; the same as (Tom) Lawrence.
“They are two really big attacking threats. The fact that none of them played in the game last week, you just don’t know.
“It has been more difficult to analyse them and we have just gone off their really good run of form prior to their Covid-19.”
Derby is a far from happy hunting ground for the Millers, who have lost on their last eight visits, encompassing trips to Pride Park and the Baseball Ground.
United have not won at Derby in 13 matches since a 3-1 success in the East Midlands city way back in September, 1965.
Rooney delighted at chance with Rams: Page 5.
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