Ex-Barnsley, Rotherham United man invited to coach at Championship club
Rotherham United manager Paul Warne recently invited former Millers player Dale Tonge to coach alongside him at the Championship club.
The 35-year-old, who has also played and coached at Barnsley, has been taking on a voluntary role at Rotherham.
Warne invited Tonge, who last coached at Heart of Midlothian in Scotland, to join him at their Roundwood training ground and was impressed by the qualities and knowledge he showed.
“I’ve always got on well with Tongey,” Warne told the media at his pre-match press conference ahead of this weekend FA Cup third-round trip to Everton.
“Unfortunately with the way football is, there are a lot of good people out of a job. I always invite people in to watch us work and have a say.
“I’m close with him, so I told him if he thought there was anything he thought we could improve, then say it. I’m not above criticism, anything but, all I want is the best for the team.
“It was the perfect opportunity to get him out of the house, he came on a voluntary basis and I was really pleased with him.
“He’s really knowledgeable about the game, he’s a really good coach and he’s got a good history with the club, all those reasons were why I was happy for him to come in.”
It is not known if any more permanent move for Tonge to join the Millers coaching staff is under consideration at present.
Warne is currently assisted at Rotherham, who are 23rd in the Championship, by assistant boss Richie Barker and first-team coach Matt Hamshaw.
Tonge has been involved in coaching since finishing his playing days in 2017.
Like his coaching career, the right-back’s playing days began at hometown club Barnsley, where he made almost a half-century of appearances and helped the club win promotion to the Championship through the play-offs in 2006.
He moved to Rotherham a year later and went on to spend six seasons at the club, playing 174 times and scoring the only goal of his professional career.
In his final season there, 2012-13, Tonge played a minor role in helping the club achieve promotion from League Two as runners-up.
He finished his career in non-league with Torquay United, Chester, Stockport County and FC United of Manchester, before moving into coaching with Barnsley.
Tonge left the Reds when Daniel Stendel was sacked as boss and joined him at Hearts, but has been out work since departing last summer.