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"I could be a lot more honest": The new podcast that takes you behind the scenes of Rotherham's League One promotion push

Rotherham manager Paul Warne
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Anyone who’s ever watched a fly-on-the-wall documentary starring a football manager will know it’s almost always a bad idea for them to mic up while they go about their job. Even if it’s entertaining for the rest of us.

So when BBC producers approached Rotherham United boss Paul Warne to do just that as the Millers attempted to win another League One promotion at the end of last term, he was surprisingly open to the idea.

Despite the pressure rising as Warne attempted to lead his charges to their now yearly yo-yo between the third tier and the Championship, the 49-year-old only needed a little bit of convincing to allow the BBC to record his every interaction for the final 90 days of the campaign.

“I had a mutual friend who introduced me to the producers and he said ‘just come and meet them, you’ll really enjoy it’,” Warne tells FourFourTwo.

“I’ve always been really open and have had lots of team meetings and trainings sessions where I’ve let in individual fans, sponsors or kids who are ill, so I’ve never been secretive or anything. I wasn’t 100% bought into it [miccing up] initially because I thought it might be a bit intrusive, although they told me it wouldn’t be.

“At the time, we were in a really good position, so I was really anxious and – like everybody in sport – a bit superstitious. We were flying at the time and I thought ‘if we do this and something goes wrong, I’ll never forgive myself’, but in the end I decided to do it.”

Warne was joined by Oxford United boss Karl Robinson in taking the plunge for BBC podcast series, Moment of Truth (opens in new tab), following their moves as the 2021/22 season draws to a close – revealing a unique insight into life as a professional football manager.

It’s likely to bring back happy memories for Warne, as they clinched a third promotion in five years by beating Gillingham 2-0 on the last day of the season. But the jubilant boss says taking part in the podcast was a positive experience for more than simply that reason.

“It wasn’t so much about being mic'ed on the side of the pitch because once the game starts, you’re completely unaware of it, so it wasn’t intrusive at all,” Warne says.

“I found it really cathartic and could be really open because I knew this wouldn’t be released until after the season ended. 

“Normally with the media, [even] if we lose at home, I have to come across as positive because I have to keep the fans on side for the next game, but with this I could be a lot more honest and candid because you know it’ll be out at the end of the season when it’s not going to have any repercussions.”

Listen to Moment of Truth on BBC Sounds here (opens in new tab)

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