It’s just under two weeks until the January transfer window opens and Paul Warne gets the chance to strengthen his squad.
There is not a major overhaul needed but several key additions could be the difference between the Millers making a legitimate push for the play-offs and slipping into mid-table.
Here’s a look at which positions in the team Warne may consider strengthening.
Due to injury and form Warne has selected three right-backs so far this season in the shape of Josh Emmanuel, Shaun Cummings and Will Vaulks. Emmanuel, who had a decent game against Plymouth at the weekend, has not lived up to his pre-season billing, Cummings has struggled to stay fit and has been inconsistent while Vaulks is a midfielder. Warne may well consider persevering with Emmanuel, but a right-back who can offer defensive solidity and get up and down the flank would be ideal.
Had it not been for repeated individual brain-freeze errors by all three centre-backs at differing stages of this season, the Millers would likely be bonafide promotion contenders. They have been hurt by such gaffes and Warne will be keen to find a proper Mr in defence to eradicate any nonsense. Think Craig Morgan or Chris Swailes and you get the picture of the type required.
The Millers are generally well stocked in midfield, but Warne has struggled for a settled line-up, again due to injury and form. Lee Frecklington’s fitness issues now look set in and the skipper’s energy and box-to-box abilities have been missed. This is far from a necessity but if a player in a similar vein becomes available – and isn’t too expensive – then Warne might be tempted to swoop.
At the top of Warne’s shopping list is at least two strikers. With Kieffer Moore returning to Ipswich – and presuming they don’t buy him permanently – Rotherham need to replace him and bring in at least one other striker. Warne, if such a player exists, has to find a like-for-like replacement for Moore, someone who offers physical presence, aerial threat, is mobile and knows where the net is. Easy eh? Or with David Ball’s recent emergence the boss may tailor his recruitment to bring in someone who would complement Ball. Either way, if at least one front man does not come through the door in January, it could be a frustrating second half to the season.