On the eve of the last international break of the 2021/22 season, both Paul Warne and Karl Robinson were in a reflective mood, discussing their childhoods, footballing journeys and what they wanted to be when they grew up.
Paul was a late bloomer as a player who went on to make over 260 appearances for the Millers before taking on the role as fitness coach and then manager. He also used to be a school teacher – something which he credits with helping shape his managerial philosophy.
For Robinson, it was a very different path. He started coaching with Steve Heighway in Liverpool’s academy before working with former England manager Sam Allardyce at Blackburn and eventually taking over from Paul Ince at MK Dons as the youngest manager in the Football League at 29.
Paul’s journey to becoming professional footballer is an emotional one filled with highs and lows. This is mirrored in the discussion with Karl, who has to pause the conversation to do something no first-team manager wants to and deliver a crushing blow to two Oxford youngsters.