STEVE EVANS has revealed that Massimo Cellino’s hands-on style of ownership at Leeds United is not for him – and admits he could never work for an owner who did not let him sign his own players.
Evans’ Rotherham United side welcome Leeds in a Championship fixture for the first time in almost ten years this evening and the Scot is grateful for the conventional working relationship he has with his own boss, Millers chairman Tony Stewart, who leaves all playing matters to him.
In contrast, Evans’ Leeds counterpart Darko Milanic effectively works with the players Cellino and sporting director Nicola Salerno bring to the club and has no control on transfer policy.
Ahead of Leeds’ last Championship match against Sheffield Wednesday, the Slovenian attempted to put the record straight regarding the influence of Cellino on the first-team by stating that he had full control over team affairs, stating tactics and formations were his decision.
For his part, Evans – who professed respect for the way the Leeds owner has ploughed millions into the club in a bid to breathe new life into it – believes that when in comes to being the head coach, it is either Cellino’s way or the highway.
He said: “If you are a Dave Hockaday, Darko Milanic or whoever you are – if you take the job under Massimo, you know the rules; he picks the players, you coach the players.
“My interest is the Millers and I pick the players, whether they come, whether they go and our chairman supports that. The minute he doesn’t support it, I go.
“That would be the way it works here and I get fantastic support. I can’t put enough words on it.
“But if you work for Massimo Cellino, you coach the players and get the results from the players he brings in or you pay with your job, that is the way it is.”
Evans added: “It is the foreign way of doing things and it does not make it right or wrong.
“If you look at Leeds United and Massimo Cellino, where would they be if he had not have stepped in with his millions of pounds?
“I know you can say he sold a player (Ross McCormack) to Fulham for £11m.
“But he has had to put millions of investment into that football club and they do it in that way.
“I have nothing but respect for the guy. If you put the money he has put into a football club, if that is your model, you are entitled to do it.
“But there a lot of English owners, in the Championship and below – probably maybe even in the Premiership – who have a big say in the team also.”