Rotherham United need to be “a little bit unbelievable now”, admits Paul Warne

Rotherham United's manager Paul Warne.
Rotherham United's manager Paul Warne.
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THERE are numerous pieces of information dotted around the white board in manager Paul Warne’s office at Rotherham United’s training ground.

Formations, lists of injured players, key dates, nuggets of motivational wisdom and even some translated French words to aid coaching winger Julien Lamy.

Rotherham United's Clark Robertson (No15 centre) celebrates scoring in a win at Blackpool.

Rotherham United's Clark Robertson (No15 centre) celebrates scoring in a win at Blackpool.

Unfortunately, though, among it all, there is no definitive solution – in French, English or any other language, for that matter – to the club’s ongoing issue surrounding their miserable home form.

It is a baffling statistic that they have won just three of 10 games at AESSEAL New York Stadium so far this season.

It is baffling because the South Yorkshire club have been so impressive on the road, winning seven of 10 away outings – and all of their last four – before a much-changed side lost 3-0 at Lincoln in Tuesday’s EFL Trophy tie.

It is not even the middle of November but they have already lost five home fixtures. Yet, strangely, the Millers only suffered eight defeats on their own patch throughout all of last season when they were in the Championship – a division higher.

There are mitigating factors, such as the fact there are so many new players in the squad following a summer overhaul, and the average age is only around 25.

Warne is not unduly worried. He said: “It is a really young side and it is quite inexperienced.

“I was talking to someone the other day about our team and I know we were in the Championship last year.

“But if you actually go through the team and where they’ve all come from, we haven’t signed players from Sunderland or Manchester City.

“Chio (Ogbene) was on loan at Exeter last year playing in and out, Dan (Barlaser) was on loan at Accrington, our keeper Dan (Iversen) was at Oldham.

“We’re not underachieving. At the moment we might be under-performing a little bit. They are a young team and they will grow together.

“Someone said in a year’s time this team will be unbelievable. Hopefully that is the case and it’s me managing them.

“But I sort of need them to be a little bit unbelievable now, especially at home, to make my sleep pattern better...”

The latest opponent looking to make the most of the Millers’ home discomfort is Accrington Stanley who, despite sitting 19th compared to their hosts in tenth, will fancy their chances when they visit tomorrow.

Still, Rotherham have the second best defence in League One and Warne points at positives such as that.

“We’ve had a couple of really good performances (at home) and then had a couple of poor performances,” he said.

“And then in fairness I don’t think people give the opposition credit.

“We lost (2-1) to Oxford. Did we play well? I don’t know. Not great.

“But you have to respect the opposition and I personally think Oxford are the best team in the league.

“Maybe it’s not our home form it’s just the fact that Oxford are better than us and you have to accept that sometimes.

“I don’t think it’s a massive issue at home. The only thing I do think is we go into those games as favourites and maybe we’re too young and too inexperienced when it hits the fan a little bit to man up.

“It sounds a bit harsh but I think as the season goes on the lads will improve and I hope they do as if their away form and home form match, we ain’t going to be far off.”

As for the message he is giving those players, Warne said: “Patience is key. We found that in our last home game (1-0 loss to Wycombe); we conceded but we had about 80 odd minutes left.

“I think the lads are so keen to score and perform at home that they get over aroused by that.

“They’re thinking too much; they are so desperate to score or get a cross in that their anxiety is that high, they just don’t play their best football.

“It’s more about just calming down and letting the game take its course.”

Warne admitted an early goal against Accrington would “settle a lot of nerves for a lot of people.”

Clearly, that will be one of their aims tomorrow.

“The longer it goes on – and our away form is significantly better than our home form – the bigger an issue it looks like,” added the manager.

“It’s not an issue to me, personally, but we understand that the learning and educational process of some of these young men does take a bit of time.

“But I’m not the one who’s paid for the season ticket. I’m the one who knows everything as I’m with them every day.

“I can see they’re improving and hopefully it will finish with a decent performance on Saturday.”

Meanwhile, Rotherham’s FA Cup second round tie at Conference promotion contenders Solihull Moors has been moved to Monday December 2 (7.45) as it will be shown live on BT Sport 1.