Sheffield Wednesday striker Stevie May prepares to face the club he rejected in tomorrow’s Hillsborough derby with Rotherham United boss Steve Evans declaring: “I hope he has an absolute stinker.”
Hot-shot May was pursued by the Millers for months before the Owls entered the bidding at the last minute and snatched the 22-year-old from their South Yorkshire rivals on the eve of the Championship season.
The clubs clash tomorrow for the first time since May opted to sign for Wednesday head coach Stuart Gray, and Evans says wages were the deciding factor in the decision.
“They paid him a lot more money,” Evans said.
““There was always a feeling, from his representatives more than him, that unless we could do something radical on finance then he was always going to find himself across the motorway.
“I don’t care how he does at Sheffield Wednesday because Stuart Gray will quite rightfully say it’s none of my business.”
“Stuart had to work very hard personally to get Stevie in because it’s not just always about money.
“You have to tell the player where he’s going to play, especially if you’re having to invest not only the size of the transfer fee but a lot of money in wages.
“I’d suggest he’s probably at the top end of the wages scale at Hillsborough, but that’s not for me to be concerned about. I hope he has an absolute stinker if he plays on Saturday.”
May, who travelled south from St Johnstone to speak to the Millers and Owls on the Friday before the season started on August 9, has scored only three goals in 16 appearances for Wednesday, but Evans remains a big admirer.
“The young man conducted himself in a really respectful, very professional manner,” he said.”
“I think he arrived in Rotherham that morning at about 11.30 and he was still with me at six o’clock at night before we set off for Derby County. What happened doesn’t take away my admiration for a young man who I think highly of. But, listen, would I have done the same to Stuart? Absolutely.” Football’s a ruthless business.”
“We tried desperately to get him in, and time will prove Stuart signed an excellent player in Stevie May.”
Gray said: “He is fully fit and has got over a virus. It’s a great opportunity for him to be involved on Saturday on the back of him being called up by Scotland. We will see if he’s involved.”