Paul Warne expresses pride as Rotherham move step closer to Championship return
Goals from Richard Wood and Will Vaulks booked the Millers’ place at Wembley.
Rotherham boss Paul Warne says getting to Wembley goes some way to repairing the pain of last season.
The Millers beat Scunthorpe 4-2 on aggregate in the League One play-off semi-final, with goals from Richard Wood and Will Vaulks either side of half-time earning a 2-0 second-leg win at New York Stadium.
It puts them one win away from bouncing straight back to the Championship after they were relegated last season with a record low points total.
Warne, who took over after Alan Stubbs and Kenny Jackett left in the space of six weeks, was left to pick up the pieces and has done a fine job.
“It feels a little bit surreal, it hasn’t sunk in yet, I am really proud,” he said.
“When I go in and see my staff, it will sink in.
“To finish the season with a final at Wembley is something that can’t be taken off me.
“I am pleased for a lot of people. It is nice after the 12 months of last year of real suffering.
“At least this year we have given the fans something to be proud of.
“To get to Wembley is pretty amazing, if I don’t achieve anything else I have definitely achieved that.
“I am proud of that now. We can just have a real go and hopefully make the town proud.”
Warne’s men were favourites to progress after Saturday’s first leg and he admits he felt nervous before the game.
“In the office before the game I was pooing bricks!” he admitted.
“I was so nervous I went to the cinema this morning to watch Deadpool 2 with the missus, which is excellent by the way, and I played squash this afternoon to take my mind off it.
“But I’m really proud tonight. We tried to get a group together who were proud to wear the shirt, wear the badge.
“We’ve put smiles on people’s faces and now we’re finishing with a trip to Wembley.”
Scunthorpe caretaker Nick Daws, who was a team-mate of Warne’s when the pair played for the Millers, revealed he is expecting to be named permanent manager later this week.
Daws took over from Graham Alexander at the end of March and the 2-0 reverse in South Yorkshire was his first loss.
It might have been different had they not wasted several chances late on with Duane Holmes twice denied by Marek Rodak and Cameron McGeehan missing an easy header, but the Iron slipped to a second successive play-off semi-final loss.
Still, Daws should be in the job next season.
“I think we’ll be sitting down on Friday and I will be hopefully confirmed as manager, that is my wish,” he said. “We will take it from there, I am proud as anything to take that responsibility.
“There is some information about locally that there are discussions to be had. That pleases me.”
On his side’s defeat, he added: “It’s tough to take. But we have gone toe-to-toe with Rotherham over the two legs and the difference is that they put the ball in the back of the net.”