Worrying times for the clubs Rotherham United left behind, fears Paul Warne

ROTHERHAM United may be exiting the lower divisions, but Paul Warne has big worries for the landscape they leave behind.
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For him, the bottom line of promotion to the Championship is not competing against some famous footballing names, but keeping many of his backroom staff in employment.

The Millers chief expects that will not be the situation at some clubs in League One or League Two as they grapple with some grim financial realities.

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Paul Warne.  Picture Bruce RollinsonPaul Warne.  Picture Bruce Rollinson
Paul Warne. Picture Bruce Rollinson

Worse still, Warne harbours fears that some unfortunate ones may even go out of existence.

He said: “I think it’s going to be really tough. I don’t want to say it will happen, but it wouldn’t surprise me if a few stadiums were locked up and never opened again.

“I hope that isn’t the case, but unfortunately the staff at football clubs are always the first to go.

“When you see teams fall out of the Championship, it is always peripheral coaching staff that are first to go and Nigel Clough fell on his sword recently too. Realistically, you are only as good as the team you can put out, so owners are more reluctant to get rid of players as they need a good team.

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“Some teams might go from two masseurs, two physios and two sports scientists to just having one of each. It’s the same on the media side and people in the club shop. It hits a lot of people.

“It’s an awful thing to say and it’s not nice for me to discuss, but I think a lot of clubs will cut back because if they don’t, they can’t make ends meet. That is the sad part of football at the moment and hence why this promotion probably means a lot more.

“In fairness, the chairman has never said to me we need make cutbacks but I’m a financially astute kid – I’m not an idiot. I understand the pressures.”

For the first time in a while, Warne slept well on Tuesday night following the news that the Millers have been promoted under the unweighted points per game format after League One clubs elected to end their season.

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A tense day ended in the desired outcome as he was able to hail his second promotion, with the fact that the Millers handled the expectation of being among the favourites to go up being particularly satisfying.

He added: “This year was completely different. We were always one of the favourites to go up which is quite unique for us. We are not used to being one of the favourites, but we were. So to go up, it was a nice thing.”

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