Rotherham United have quickly moved on from the loss of two key players as they step up their player recruitment this summer.
The club announced yesterday they have been unable to agree new deals with centre-half Craig Morgan and midfielder Ben Pringle, but manager Steve Evans has already arranged meetings with players he would like to bring in.
“The targets that I have indentified to the chairman (Tony Stewart) have been sanctioned, and a number of meetings have now been set up with those players and their representatives,” Evans revealed.
Skipper Morgan and Pringle were instrumental figures in the Millers’ rise from League Two to the Championship and both made their mark in the second tier this season.
“I am obviously disappointed that both have decided to move on from what has been a simply stunning three-year period for both players,” Evans added. “On behalf of everyone at Rotherham United, I would like to thank both for their service and we wish them well for the future.”
Rotherham were serious in their attempts to keep the duo and offered both improved terms, but no deals were reached.
Evans said they would be “important” signings if they decided to stay but he was always prepared to look elsewhere.
Morgan, aged 29, is a target for Bolton Wanderers, who will be able to offer more in wages than the Millers, while 25-year-old Pringle will have several Championship suitors. Millwall, who went on to be relegated to League One, tried to sign him in the January transfer window.
Millers vice-chairman Richard Stewart, the son of Tony, used his Twitter page to say: “Players come and go. It’s a business. RUFC remain trying to improve on and off the field and carrying on with our progress.”
Pringle made 168 appearances for the Millers, scoring 22 goals, while Morgan played 105 times, scoring one. They made 43 and 38 appearances this season respectively.
Meanwhile, goalkeeper Scott Loach and midfielder Conor Newton, who have both been told they can leave AESSEAL New York Stadium, have attracted the attention of several clubs, Evans revealed.
“There has been significant interest in both players and the lads and their representatives are in discussions with a number of clubs,” he said.
“My understanding is that those discussions will continue. Both players are still available to any interested clubs, and neither are part of the plans moving forward.”