Transfer deadline day can be an exciting and frustrating occasion for football fans across the country. This is perhaps the case for Rotherham United supporters who have mixed feelings as majorly liked centre-back Aïmen Belaid has left the club by mutual consent.
The centre-back was fighting to gain a place in the League One side’s starting line-up, but it seemed Warne prefers, the still blossoming partnership between new signings Semi Ajayi and Michael Ihiekwe. Belaid was fighting a losing battle.
This lack of first team action this season, perhaps surprisingly, followed the Tunisian international playing a key role for Rotherham in the latter stages of last season’s Championship campaign.
The 28 year-old made 21 appearances for the Millers in total, after joining in January 2016 from Bulgarian side PFC Levski Sofia.
Unfortunately he simply failed to secure a spot in the first team for a long duration of time.
The general feeling appeared to be that Belaid never received a sufficient chance to prove himself during his tenure in South Yorkshire. His departure did also provoke some dismay among supporters on social media:
Big mistake getting rid of Belaid. Far better than Wood and was even pushing Ajayi for a starting spot. #rufc
— Michael Collins (@MCollins_97) August 31, 2017
Before Belaid’s departure was announced, there was some exciting news for Millers supporters – as 20 year-old centre-back Manny Onariase was revealed as the club’s latest signing.
This is another youthful addition by Warne who signed the player on a two-year deal from Brentford.
— Rotherham United (@OfficialRUFC) August 31, 2017
The product of the West Ham United academy boasts a degree of experience already having played 24 times in all competitions Cheltenham Town on loan last season.
Onariase enthused about his move: “The training ground looks great, the pitches are excellent and all the lads have been great.”
With one centre-back in, and another out for Rotherham, only time will tell if Warne’s ambitious side will be able to shut up at the back thanks to recent dealings, following their mediocre start to the season.
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Featured image: George Sanders