Former Derby County captain Shaun Barker has backed David Clowes’ decision to appoint Paul Warne as the League One club’s new manager.

The Rams confirmed last week that Warne had left Rotherham United to take charge at Pride Park – with interim boss Liam Rosenior relieved of his duties.

The 49-year-old spent six years as Rotherham manager and won promotion to the Championship three times during that period.

It speaks to Derby’s ambition that Warne left a club that are eighth in the second tier for one sitting 11th in League One but his experience could be just what they need to bounce back up this term.

Speaking on Rams TV, Barker backed the decision to appoint the new boss and offered some insight into the motivation behind the move from the East Midlands club’s perspective.

He said: “I think there will be two reasons why David Clowes has made the decision to bring Warney in and the first will undoubtedly be his character and what he stands for and his morals, all those things that have really highlighted himself as a manager over the last five or six years.

“And secondly will be his track record in League One. Three promotions in five seasons is quite remarkable and for a team like Rotherham who are not a big side in the Championship and have almost established themselves as a good League One side but to get three promotions on the trot from that division into the Championship is superb.

“In my opinion, I think it would have been the highest that Rotherham would have finished in the Championship had Paul stayed this year so the progressions they’ve seen over the last few years have been outstanding.

“He knows League One both as a player and as a manager and part of the staff – he’s been around it for a long time. In terms of history and experience at League One, trying to get from League One to the Championship – there’s probably nobody better suited at the moment.”

Warne’s first game in charge will come on the weekend when the Rams welcome Cheltenham Town to Pride Park.

It’s hard to disagree with anything the former Rams skipper is saying here.

Barker knows both clubs – having spent six years at Pride Park and played alongside Warne at Rotherham – so he’s well placed to offer some insight into the situation.

Warne’s promotion record in League One is outstanding and during his time with the Millers we’ve seen how good he is at building squad unity, which is what Derby need after so much turnover in the summer.

It’s going to be interesting to see how he fares at a bigger club with bigger expectations but on paper, this looks like a fantastic appointment.


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