Rotherham signed three players in 24 hours over Tuesday and Wednesday, with versatile 23-year-old Hamilton Academicals midfielder Hakeem Odoffin joining on a three-year deal and Huddersfield Town defender Rarmani Edmonds-Green agreeing to a season-long loan deal.
The trio was completed by 24-year-old Rochdale midfielder Ollie Rathbone – also to a three-year deal – a player Warne believes can be key to his side unlocking opposition defences.
“I’ve always been a massive fan of Ollie’s, but never been in a position before where I thought I could take him out of Rochdale,” said Warne of a player who played alongside Marcus Rashford in the Manchester United Academy and has over 140 appearances in League One with Rochdale under his belt.
“So I struck when Rochdale were relegated, which sounds a bit awful, but the best players are the most ambitious ones and it’s no different to us going down and someone coming in for Matt Crooks.
“Ollie’s just a little bit different to our midfielders and in League One especially teams might come here and defend crosses because we’re pretty notorious at crossing the ball. I think we need someone a little bit different, someone with a bit of guile and that’s what Ollie brings us. He can unlock a door, he can put our strikers in and we won’t have to be so dependent on going out wide and getting crosses in.”
Rathbone will compete for a place in midfield alongside Jamie Lindsay, Dan Barlaser, Ben Wiles and another new boy in Odoffin.
“Hakeem brings us a bit more ahthleticism in the team,” said Warne.
“He can play sitting midfielder which is the role I prefer him in, but he also gives us cover at right-back and at centre-half.
“He started at Tottenham but stalled a little bit, so hopefully we can bring out the best in him.”