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Rotherham United: Millers on brink of midfielder and striker deals

Matt Palmer, left
Matt Palmer, left

Rotherham United are on the verge of wrapping up a permanent deal for a Championship midfielder and could also add a loan striker to their ranks in the next 48 hours.

The League One Millers have made a third and final six-figure offer for a central midfield man in the second tier and manager Paul Warne believes it will be enough to force the sale.

The player has been Warne’s top target throughout the January transfer window. Rotherham aren’t revealing his identity but I understand it is Burton Albion’s Matt Palmer.

“I’m hopeful we will finalise that one today or tomorrow,” Warne said.

“We’ve increased our bid three times. The bid now is our value for him, which I think is more than fair. There won’t be any more movement from us. We’ve gone as high as we’re prepared to.

“We started with a reasonable bid, moved up quite a bit, then moved up again and said: ‘Look, this is our top value.’ We’ve put a really good bid in and that should be sufficient to get the services of the player, which would be great news for us.

Caolan Lavery

Caolan Lavery

“We’ve virtually agreed personal terms with the lad. He wants to come.”

Rotherham, who moved into the play-off places this week by demolishing Bradford City 2-0 in the Yorkshire derby at AESSEAL New York Stadium, are also close to bringing in a centre-forward until the end of the season.

The Millers, unbeaten in their last nine matches, are negotiating with his club and aren’t far off an agreement.

“We’ve improved the offer on the deal for the striker, in terms of how much wages we can pay,” Warne said.

“I’m hopeful, regarding both, the deals will be done and dusted by this weekend.”

Again, Rotherham aren’t naming names, but Sheffield United’s Caolan Lavery has been made available for loan and it is thought he favours a switch to the attack-minded Millers despite extensive interest from other League One sides

“I want the two players I’m trying to sign to be involved in training at the start of next week,” said Warne, whose team have no match this weekend.

“That will be us pretty much done in the window in terms of incomings. They’re the ones I earmarked to get at the start of the window.”

Warne has already brought in targetman Michael Smith during the window but is keen to have extra options up front even though Rotherham have scored in every one of their last 22 matches.

“I’m pretty happy with my group. They’ve been performing really well. They’re a close bunch,” he said. “You can never have too much firepower really. I started the season with five strikers but I’m back to four at the moment. I want to take it back up to five.

“We lost Procs (Jamie Proctor) to injury at the end of the last window, Kieffer (Moore) went back to Ipswich and Frecks (midfielder Lee Frecklington) left on a really good deal. It’s just been about replacing them really.

“It’s not that we have a dearth of talent anywhere. It’s more about trying to put ourselves in a place where we enter the last third of the season in as strong a place as we started the season.”

Palmer, who scored a spectacular goal against Rotherham in Warne’s first game in charge in December 2016, is only 22 but has extensive experience in the Championship and League One.

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