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Rotherham United get major breakthrough in chase to sign 24-year-old

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Rotherham United have had a six-figure bid for Rochdale midfielder and summer target Oliver Rathbone accepted, according to Football Insider.

As per the same outlet, Paul Warne’s side had their opening offer for the 24-year-old rejected last week, with this initial setback coming just days after fellow central midfielder Matt Crooks’ departure from the New York Stadium.

But after an improved bid was launched by the Millers and subsequently accepted, this deal now relies on Rathbone passing a medical and agreeing personal terms with the recently relegated League One side.

Quiz: What was the score the last time Rotherham United played at each of these 24 stadiums?

1 of 24

Cardiff City Stadium?

Although the central midfielder might be sad to move away from Manchester after spending many years there, making the short trip to Rochdale in 2016 following his release from Manchester United, agreeing a contract should be a formality for Rathbone who will be keen on a return to the third tier and compete with a promotion-chasing side.

The 24-year-old has spent his five opening seasons at the Crown Oil Area plying his trade in League One – but with the Dale’s relegation to the fourth tier in May – the Millers have seen this as an opportunity to swoop in and take one of the Greater Manchester side’s prized assets off their hand with just one year left on his current deal.

He scored three goals and recorded four assists in 40 league appearances last season.

The Verdict:

This is a major boost who will want a replacement ready to come in for Matt Crooks in time for their opening league game of the season against Plymouth Argyle on Saturday afternoon.

With this bid now accepted, they should be able to push on, negotiate personal terms without much fuss and get a medical booked in before the EFL’s registration deadline. And with Rathbone enjoying a full pre-season with his current club, he should be relatively up to speed in terms of fitness.

Whether he starts at the weekend remains to be seen, but the fact they’re tantalisingly close to clinching this deal and willing to splash out on a cash-based deal in Covid times signals their intent to the rest of the division.

Ipswich Town might be stealing all the headlines at the moment with ten signings arriving at Portman Road this summer – but don’t take your eye off Rotherham United who will be one of the favourites for promotion again after their relegation last term.


A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Rotherham United get major breakthrough in chase to sign 24-year-old

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