DON’T BLAME TONY FOR MILLERS’ MISFORTUNE
SO, ROTHERHAM United are heading back to League One next season and I must admit, as every week and subsequent result has passed, the hurt inside me has increased.
When I consider the hard work and sheer desire that went into leading the Millers to back-to-back promotions to the Championship and then establishing them in that first season, it is not only me who feels that pain.
The supporters are the lifeblood of any club and at The New York Stadium they are fantastic. They are fewer in number than at Leeds United, but I know from living among and with them for nearly four years that they love their club just as much.
To my astonishment, I have heard and seen chairman Tony Stewart being criticised. Let me be clear, he has put something like £30million into his club.
Some of these huge sums helped build a fantastic new stadium and, of course, largely fund the team, but to some it is not enough. Please see it for what it is and support the man.
The reality is that Tony has been badly let down by managers taking on the role, failing and then looking for someone to blame. Scandalous!
It is a fact that, had my good friend Neil Warnock not produced a near miracle, the Millers would have been relegated last season.
Tony Stewart is a fantastic chairman and he does not deserve the pain he has endured in the last eight months. I know that because we have spent many a Saturday messaging each other the support that is needed when things go wrong.
If they can get the right manager in place this time, they will be a real force in League One next season.
Big decisions will have to be made soon and the chairman will never shirk from making them. The new manager is the biggest of all.
I believe the strategy for success next season should be simple: keep the best players like Lee Frecklington, who is Championship class, and sign only those that can win promotion at the first attempt.
‘Once a Miller, always a Miller’ is often said by the supporters and I know exactly what that means because I share that feeling from the good times I had there.
They have a chairman in Tony Stewart who rides the rollercoaster with the manager. I wish the Millers, and him in particular, every success!