‘It’s like one of the Commandments if McCarthy says it’: Rotherham boss on his bid to keep ‘tearful’ Moore

Kieffer Moore has scored 13 goals for Rotherham during his loan spell this season. Photo: �INPHO/Rya

Kieffer Moore has scored 13 goals for Rotherham during his loan spell this season. Photo: �INPHO/Ryan Byrne - Credit: �INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Rotherham boss Paul Warne has accepted the fact Kieffer Moore will return to Portman Road in January, but is still tugging at the striker’s heartstrings in a bid to keep him at the club.

The Blues loanee has been an instant hit at the New York Stadium, leading the League One scoring charts with 13 goals, but Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy has made it clear the big forward will return to Portman Road at the start of 2018.

But, while Warne has accepted there is nothing he can do to change McCarthy’s mind, he is still doing all he can to show Moore just how highly he is valued at his temporary home.

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“Mick has said he is going to take him back in January and I don’t think there is anything more certain than that,” Warne told The Star.

“It is written in cement. It is like one of the Commandments if Mick McCarthy says that. There is no way on this earth he will change his mind.

“Kieffer will go back, hopefully plays for Ipswich, they don’t see what we see, so he can play for us again. They might sell him before he even kicks a ball, but I have been led to believe he will go back and play.

“Every day in management is a challenge and replacing him is just one of those challenges. Since he started scoring and Ipswich knocked our bid back, we have been looking for replacements because it is inevitable that if you are scoring every week in League One then your parent club will want you back. It’s not like we have woken up today and only just realised it is going to happen.

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“I was going to treat the lads to a cardboard cut-out of him and put it in the foyer over Christmas, and to tug at his heartstrings as well. I was sat at the training ground looking at clips. I was showing Kieffer who I am trying to get to replace him and I could see a little tear in his eye!

“When he goes back to Ipswich, I hope it goes brilliantly for him and he plays in the Championship for the rest of his life. I will be over the moon for him. He’s a great kid. He deserves to play at the highest level. But, from a selfish point of view, I hope he comes back and plays for me.”

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Warne also confirmed his side put in a bid to sign Moore permanently in August, but was rebuffed when Town told him they were not ready to let him go for good.

“I could have got Kieffer in on a permanent, but it was a bit of a gamble,” Warne said.

Kieffer Moore (right) and Rotherham boss Paul Warne: Picture: SHEFFIELD STAR

Kieffer Moore (right) and Rotherham boss Paul Warne: Picture: SHEFFIELD STAR - Credit: Archant

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“A lot of people told me it was a bad gamble at the time. It could have gone that way and I’d have fallen flat on my face. The loans are there for giving players game-time and now I have got to find something of a similar ilk.

“It’s frustrating he is going back, but it shows how well he has done. If every loan player who came here got called back all the time, it would be frustrating but it would show we have done something right and we would get a good reputation an kudos to us.

“We put a bid in the week of him scoring a hat-trick. It was after the Fleetwood game. The chairman agreed we could put an offer in. It was rejected and they let us know he wasn’t really for sale and that they wanted him out on loan and to see where it took him.”

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