Rotherham's Warnock appointment nightmare for Leeds cult hero Luciano Becchio after transfer criticism

Lucciano Becchio

The past week at Rotherham could not have worked out worse for Luciano Becchio.

Anybody feeling sorry for Neil Redfearn after his sacking by Rotherham United this week should spare a thought for the misfortune of Luciano Becchio too.

It was Redfearn who pushed to sign the Argentine free agent, and had been working on getting the striker fit to play a role in the survival run in.

Now Becchio has been re-united with his former boss Neil Warnock, who reluctantly sold him from Leeds United in 2013 to Norwich City in a part exchange deal for Steve Morison.

Warnock was appointed by the Millers last night on a short-term basis as he aims to help them retain their place in the Championship.

It will be an awkward reunion after Warnock criticised Becchio in his autobiography, claiming he figuratively put a gun to his head with his desire to leave Elland Road.

The Yorkshire Evening Post reported in June 2013 that Warnock wrote: "At that stage he wanted to go to either Turkey or China. The Turks were offering to nearly treble his wages so inevitably I get a player coming to see me telling me he’s 29 and this is his big chance to make himself secure for life.

“I know he’s as good as telling me that if I don’t let him go I might not get the best out of him. But I can’t tell the local press there is a gun to my head. The issue came to a head when we lost at Barnsley in January and to my eyes Becchio never broke sweat. He had to go but I needed a replacement."

The criticism that Becchio did not try for Leeds - a club he was a real hero at - is bound to have stung, but there is precedent Warnock will be able to turn it around.

Warnock infamously criticised El Hadji Diouf while QPR boss, calling the then Blackburn Rovers forward a 'sewer rat' - only to sign him for Leeds United.

If he can repair that working relationship, surely he can talk Becchio round - if he decides he wants to, but it may be a little uncomfortable at first.

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