Warne's pride at hosting Villa

Paul Warne is looking forward to Villa challengePaul Warne is looking forward to Villa challenge
Paul Warne is looking forward to Villa challenge
CARETAKER manager Paul Warne is looking forward to pitting his wits against Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce this afternoon, but admits the experience will be slightly surreal.

Rotherham United’s home clash with former Premier League big-boys Villa will be Warne’s 18th game in the hot-seat since he took over following the shock resignation of former boss Kenny Jackett in November.

“I’m proud to be the manager of the team, I make no bones about the fact this is my team, so it’s a proud moment."

PAUL WARNE

Of his 17 games so far, Warne has notched three wins and one draw and the Millers currently sit 16 points from safety at the foot of the Championship table.

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But the former Millers forward is looking forward to today’s tussle with one of the biggest name’s in English football, and urged his players to do the same.

He said: “To suddenly manage a team in a full house against Aston Villa and Steve Bruce seems a little bit surreal, like it was with (Newcastle manager) Rafa Benitez.

“If this was my job for the next ten years maybe I would get used to it, I’m trying to – because my missus keeps telling me off – enjoy it a little bit more because it will go quickly.

“I’m trying to get the lads to enjoy it and they’ll enjoy it if they play well.

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“I like to think after the game I can shake all the Villa players' and staff's hands and think the lads have had a right go, if we win or lose I can’t beat myself up about it anymore.”

Pride will be the overwhelming feeling for Warne when he leads his troops out against an expensively assembled Villa squad, particularly given his own non-league background as a player.

Warne said: “I’m proud to be the manager of the team, I make no bones about the fact this is my team, so it’s a proud moment.

“Because of the way my career went, through non-league and into league football at 23, and now to be managing a team in the Championship, I feel a little bit of a fraud, that’s the truth.

“But I still enjoy it and I still do everything I can.”