Rotherham United: How did the Millers do in the transfer window?

Jamie Proctor
Jamie Proctor

Only one thing was missing as Rotherham United wrapped up their business in the summer transfer window.

A new striker.

Richie Towell, right

Richie Towell, right

There had been no pressing need for one last weekend, with just a few days to go until Thursday’s 11pm deadline and five frontmen already in the squad.

But a serious knee injury sustained by Jamie Proctor that will keep the centre-forward out for most of the Millers’ League One campaign changed that.

Rotherham, who travel to Portsmouth on Sunday, made late attempts to bring in an attacker, but the only deadline-day arrivals were centre-half Manny Onariase and midfielder Richie Towell, bringing manager Paul Warne’s number of new recruits to 10.

Warne looks to have acted well in the window, with his first seven signings all making their mark to varying degrees.

Onariase and Towell - along with goalkeeper Marek Rodak, who arrived on Wednesday - are, as yet, untested.

Central defender Michael Ihiekwe, midfielder Darren Potter and winger Ryan Williams have turned in accomplished displays, while Proctor was looking a bargain from Bolton Wanderers at £75,000.

Right-back Josh Emmanuel came in on loan from Ipswich Town and impressed before errors and erratic decision-making marred his most recent matches.

Forward David Ball, the marquee summer capture after his exploits at Fleetwood Town, struggled on opening day at his former club, found himself out of the side and has shown glimpses of his talent in a series of cameos.

Kieffer Moore

Kieffer Moore

Kieffer Moore, meanwhile, joined on loan as the striker fans at parent club Ipswich Town fans didn’t rate and has made an impact even bigger than his 6ft 5in frame.

Rodak, just 20, has been signed on a season-long loan from Fulham to immediately challenge Richard O’Donnell for the No 1 spot.

Warne believes he can develop Onariase, also 20, who has a two-year contract at AESSEAL New York Stadium after leaving Brentford.

Loanee Towell, 26, had a crazy scoring record at Dundalk for a midfielder - 43 goals in 34 appearances - but was largely untried last season in the Championship after his eye for goal earned him a move to Brighton.

Two centre-halves left in the final hours of the window. Aimen Belaid departed by “mutual consent” and Dominic Ball headed to Aberdeen for the rest of the 2017/18 campaign. Neither figured in Warne’s first-team thinking and their exits make sense.

Forward Jonson Clarke-Harris, attracting interest from League One, League Two and Scotland, might have gone out on loan, but Proctor’s bad luck and the lack of replacement ended that option.

After three defeats in their opening four league matches, Rotherham head to Pompey looking for a result. Some performances, with their hard running, relentless pressing and high-tempo attacking, have been really encouraging, but there’s nothing like points on the board to build momentum.

Last Saturday’s 2-0 home defeat to Charlton when Proctor suffered his injury wasn’t the Millers at their best. The 5-0 thrashing of Southend showed what they’re capable of.

Moore will lead from the front at Fratton Park.

He’s scored four goals in four league games and been a towering, mobile menace.

How the Millers need him to stay fit.

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