Joe targets top half finish

Rotherham United reveal their new kit for 2013-2014 Season. Assistant manager Paul Raynor with players Joe Skarz and Adam Collin
Rotherham United reveal their new kit for 2013-2014 Season. Assistant manager Paul Raynor with players Joe Skarz and Adam Collin

Rotherham United full-back Joe Skarz has targeted a top-half finish in League One next season after sealing a permanent transfer to the Millers.

Skarz, who enjoyed a loan spell at the New York Stadium last season as Rotherham sealed automatic promotion from League Two, signed a two-year deal with the Millers when his contract with Bury expired.

“If we can get a good start then I see no reason we can’t be looking at the top end of the table,” 23-year-old Skarz said.

“We’ve got some momentum from last season, and we’ll be looking to pick up some wins in August and carry it on.”

Skarz’s future was one of the first to be secured by manager Steve Evans in pre-season, and six players have now been brought to the club since promotion was assured.

Despite initially only talking about bringing in “four or five” newcomers, Evans is still not satisfied with the number of bodies in his squad and is still targeting more additions,

Matt Tubbs is one name frequently linked with the Millers, having worked closely with Evans during their time at Crawley Town.

Evans, who last week oversaw the appointment of Garreth Barker as the club’s new academy manager, has no concerns over the quality of the players currently at his disposal.

The issue for the Rotherham boss is more about quantity - with a tough fixture schedule in League One, especially around the Christmas and New Year period, injuries and suspensions could derail their season and strength in depth could prove crucial.

n Meanwhile, the South Yorkshire Times understands that Barnsley’s interest in Brighton defender Adam El-Abd still remains very much alive.

The 28-year-old was born in Sussex, but qualifies to play for Egypt through his Egyptian father.

But Reds manager David Flitcroft, who has taken his side to Spain for a pre-season training camp, is in no hurry to get any deals done, having already brought in Dale Jennings from Bayern Munich and signing former loan star Chris O’Grady from South Yorkshire rivals Sheffield Wednesday.

Barnsley have also confirmed the signing of goalkeeper Christian Dibble, the son of Millers goalkeeping coach Andy.