West Bromwich Albion v Rotherham United: Leam Richardson calls for pride as post-relegation reset starts early

Rotherham United head to West Bromwich Albion on Wednesday with their fate already sealed, but manager Leam Richardson says the final five games of the season will be important in setting the traits he wants to see in League One.

The Millers must rebuild from there after relegation from the Championship was confirmed on Friday but Richardson argues it is not true to say his squad have nothing to play for.

"You have your own professional pride," he argued. "That's what I've been trying to put across since I came in (as coach in December).

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"I spoke to the chairman after two or three weeks in the job and told him exactly my thoughts about where we were going to go, what I thought the season would look like. Nothing has surprised me.

"Nothing will surprise me in the next five games."

Richardson claimed the side he has been in charge of for 21 games has not been a fair reflection of his values but he has a pre-season and a transfer window to change things.

“There's five games left in the Championship," he said. “If lads want to make themselves available then they should.

"It's important I speak about the culture and environment. It needs to represent myself. That hurts right now because it doesn't.

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UNHAPPY: Rotherham United coach Leam Richardson says his team does not represent himUNHAPPY: Rotherham United coach Leam Richardson says his team does not represent him
UNHAPPY: Rotherham United coach Leam Richardson says his team does not represent him

"I'm at the front of it, I take the full blame but it doesn't represent me at the minute. Hopefully we get a hard-working, happy environment and a culture that will represent myself and Rotherham United Football Club.

"(I want) a side that's got really strong habits, a side who can run, can play and can fight at any given point. You got to go to different places and you've got to be able to run.

"Our running stats this year are nowhere near where they should be. Now and again you've got to be able to fight. We've got to build a squad that can do all three."

Giving their fans something positive from a miserable season is goalkeeper Viktor Johansson's aim.

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"There’s five games left to give a good account of ourselves and show something for the fans who come to support us – even to ourselves," he said. "It hasn't been good enough from us the last couple of months and we want to at least find something good to end the season with."

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