Evans stadium ban will have ‘minimal effect’

IT is business as usual, says Rotherham United chairman Tony Stewart, who is confident the match-day absence of manager Steve Evans for the next six games will not hinder the club’s League Two promotion bid.

Evans was handed the stadium ban along with a £3,000 fine from the Football Association on Monday afternoon after he was found guilty of using abusive and insulting words and behaviour with a reference to gender during a League Two match between his former side, Crawley Town, and Bradford City in March.

The ban starts on Saturday when the Millers – one of the pre-season favourites to claim promotion – host Torquay United, with Evans not due to be back in the first-team dugout until the home encounter with Southend United on October 13.

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Stewart said: “We accept the verdict and get on with it and move forward. It was an incident that was before Rotherham United and Steve Evans got together.

“We’ve got all the technology to be of use with regards to Steve being able to watch the matches and monitor performance. What Steve will have to do regarding games is probably have a team chat away from the stadium and obviously we abide by what has been dished out to him – knowing he won’t be able to attend any matches in the next six.

“It will have minimal effect at all. He will still have his team talk while he’s got a good (backroom) team.

“And, as far as I’m concerned, their job is to do what they need to do to get promotion this season. We’ve got a good enough side to achieve it and I’m still positive about things.

“Steve’s a positive guy and we’ve got a good team and have invested well and feel it will be an enterprising season. We’re getting some good crowds and good support and that cocktail added to the good team means us confident of success.

“It was disappointing to lose to York and getting thrashed at Port Vale. But it’s early days and it’s a long season and we feel we won’t be far away from setting out what we want to achieve.”

Meanwhile, out-of-favour Millers midfielder Danny Schofield admits he is desperate to grasp the lifeline offered him by League Two rivals Accrington Stanley after joining on an emergency three-month loan.

Doncaster-born Schofield, 32, who has not featured at first-team level for the club in 2012-13, said: “I can’t wait to get started.

“At Rotherham, I’m currently in the situation where I’m not going to play under the current manager. This is an ideal opportunity for me to come here and, hopefully, play some games. I’m thoroughly looking forward to it.”