Chairman Tony Stewart paid a rare visit to the Rotherham United dressing room after the derby-day defeat at the hands of Sheffield Wednesday, manager Steve Evans has revealed.
The Millers were edged out 3-2 after leading twice as a frantic final 10 minutes brought four goals and head into the international break with the gap between themselves and the Championship relegation places cut to five points.
“Our chairman has just come down. He’s never been down in two and a half years,” said Evans.
“He’s hugged me and he’s hugged nearly every one of the players. He feels for us. When we bleed here we bleed together.
“We’re as down as we can be but thankfully we’ve got a little while to pick people up and go again.”
The Owls fought back after bringing on three attacking substitutes, but Evans refused to accept that the introduction of Caolan Lavery, Chris Maguire and former Rotherham target Stevie May altered the course of the match.
“I don’t think their subs changed the game. Bad defending changed the game,” he said,
“You can’t get wrong side from a free-kick and you can’t not track a runner down the middle of the pitch. That’s what cost us the game.”
Lewis McGugan was the standout performer at AESSEAL New York Stadium, but head coach Stuart Gray said the victory was built on more then the display of the Owls midfielder.
“When we went 2-1 down, we could have crumbled but we didn’t. We stuck in there and got the three points,” Gray said.
“Lewis showed his all-round qualities and his ball retention, he can pick out a pass. It was an overall good team performance.”
The result lifted Wednesday into 12th spot in the second tier and dropped Rotherham a place into 21st, five points above third-from-bottom Wigan Athletic.