Changes at Rotherham United
Changes at the Club
The first change that I have enforced is for the pitch to be relayed. I feel that it is important that when the club makes the step up to League One that we go up for a decent pitch for teams to come play on. A fresh surface will help our passing game and allow us to dictate the play how we want it to be played. It is a minor thing but it could end up being an important one.
When I joined Rotherham we weren’t exactly blessed with expert backroom staff and this is something that hasn’t changed. There have been two hindrances that still remain at the end of this League Two season. The first being that Rotherham aren’t exactly the biggest club in world football so can find it hard to attract decent calibre of staff that I feel will contribute anything of significance to the club. Even if I managed to find someone that I wanted to join the club the wage budget is stretched thin so I can’t be offering lucrative deals. Despite this I have managed to add Kenny Black to the backroom staff.
Kenny will bring some average ability ratings to the backroom team but they are much needed ones. It will also allow us to share out the responsibilities in terms of training so that the ratings can be increased in terms of provision. It is very frustrating that we won’t be able to bring anyone else in which means Kenny will be the only addition for the coming season.
There is further frustration that the board of directors cannot provide cash to attract high calibre staff members but they can pay out the money to improve the youth facilities. The facilities will take a few months to improve and it is a good signal of intent from the board that they do want to improve the club. The aim of the facilities is of course is to bring in young talented players who can push for a first team place in seasons to come. It is however going to be a useless investment if we don’t have good enough staff to man the facilities.
Changes to the Team
A lot of players have been allowed to leave the club by the means of not renewing their contracts. The players were just not good enough to play in League One and we would have gone into games and struggled. I don’t intend to go into League One and be pushed over. In order to avoid this happening it was important to bring in new players who want first team action and that is something that I can provide them.
There will be a couple of names that you will notice and you will be aware of their ability. In my first season at Rotherham I had managed to bring in Nacho Huertas from Liverpool last season but due to the mismanagement of the previous manager I could only sign him for three months. The lad scored on his debut but then just didn’t have enough time to make an impact. This time round he has been brought in on loan and the loan will last until the end of the season without him being able to be recalled. He will bring a lot of Spanish flair to the team and he will be desperate to show the Liverpool manager what is capable of on the pitch. I am confident he will be a big player for us this coming season despite his young age.
The Armstrong deal has been one in the pipe line for a long team with us having managed to tie him down on a free transfer from Dundee United a few months ago. He is a great young player who I am sure can do well in League One. He has youth on his side and many years of development ahead of him. The decent amount of game time he will be given will surely increase his already decent ability ratings. With a number of wingers leaving the club it was important to bring someone who could fill the vacant position and I am sure he will do this successfully.
I can’t quite believe that we have managed to sign John Bostock on a free transfer from Spurs. He is a brilliant young English player who has a very bright future ahead of him. He was never going to break into the Spurs first team anytime soon so he was seeking a club that would give him first team football and Rotherham can do that. I am looking forward to him pairing up with Dean Parrett who he played with in the Spurs reserves before Dean signed for us last season. They could be an exciting partnership that could create a lot of goals this coming season.
I do think we have managed to get ourselves a bargain with Souttar joining the club for the reasonable fee of £275k. He is going to have to be patient at the beginning of his time at the club as he is still a young lad who needs to be brought into the team gradually. He has a lot of potential and if he is determined then there is no reason why he can’t grow into a commanding defender and make the right back position his for many years to come. The transfer has taken a big chunk out of the transfer budget but we still had enough to bring in Liam Noble and Elliott Parish.
The loan deals that you see are season long, with the teams not able to recall their players, with us paying no more than 10% for any of the players’ wages. Despite this we have brought in a lot of other players whose contracts we do have to pay for. This has resulted in the club having a negative budget of just over £1k at the moment. I am hoping that the board of directors will bail us out with a cash injection, if not, then the club will continue to lose money on a monthly basis.
I have only shared with you a snippet of the players brought in and if there are any others you want to see the statistics for then please do ask.