Rotherham United handed fitness boost regarding key midfielder Dan Barlaser

ROTHERHAM UNITED manager Paul Warne has confirmed that influential playmaker Dan Barlaser is set to return to training shortly - and could be in the fray for the League One game with Southend United on Saturday week.

Dan Barlaser.

Barlaser, an integral part in the Millers' rise to the automatic promotion positions over the winter and one of the form midfielders in the division, was stretchered off with an ankle injury amid worrying scenes following lengthy medical treatment in the club's recent top-of-the-table game at Coventry City on February 25.

Fears were subsequently allayed that Barlaser, on a season-long loan from Newcastle United, will be sidelined for most of the run-in following a scan.

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Warne has provided a further positive update ahead of his side's weekend trip to Rochdale where they are expected to be backed by a bumper travelling contingent of close to 2,000.

Warne said: "Dan Barlaser looks like he's got the all-clear, which is good. He'll be back training towards the back end of this week or start of next.

"We've done really well. We've only had a couple of muscle injuries and some freakish ones.

"We have virtually everyone back now apart from Robbo (Clark Robertson) and even his (injury) is a bit freakish.

"We've got some good athletes because it's usually the case that good athletes get injured less."