ROTHERHAM UNITED chief Steve Evans has paid a fulsome tribute to in-form midfielder Ben Pringle – and believes he is every bit the equal of much-vaunted Wolves star Bakary Sako.
Both wide-sided players have lit up League One this term and while the Wanderers star is ahead in the scoring stakes with 12 goals compared to Pringle’s haul of six, Evans says his player’s value is simply inestimable.
On Pringle, who produced another stellar show to help United extend their majestic unbeaten run to 11 matches in a 2-0 victory at Oldham, Evans said: “Pringle does things that players in League One can’t do. If Sako at Wolves is said to be worth £4m, then the chairman needs to have a think about what Ben is worth. He is a top player.”
Evans also earmarked praise for Pringle’s engine-room colleagues James Tavernier, Lee Frecklington and Richie Smallwood, with the form of the latter two dictating that a current Northern Ireland international in Michael O’Connor can’t earn a starting spot.
Evans, who says striker Wes Thomas will be available for this weekend’s home clash with Walsall, added: “O’Connor is absolutely buzzing in training and desperate to be in the team, but with Richie and Frecks playing as they are, he can’t get in.
“But if they drop a yard, then Michael is waiting to grab his chance, while at long last, we also have Rob Milsom fit.”
While the Millers remain on course in their pursuit of the Championship, so their nearer neighbours Doncaster Rovers took a significant step towards maintaining their second-tier status, with a typically instinctive goal from Billy Sharp in stoppage time securing them a massive 2-1 win over 10-man Watford.
It followed the loan forward’s strike in the weekend derby victory over Huddersfield, with persistence finally paying off for Sharp on Tuesday.
On the priceless triumph, which moved Rovers seven points clear of the drop zone. Sharp said: “I was just relieved in the end because I should have scored before that.
“But something inside me was telling me I would get another chance.”
Defender Gabby Tamas is set to be out for between four to six weeks after fracturing his cheekbone.