The man who has lured Alan Stubbs to Rotherham United believes the ambition of the new manager will push Rotherham United up the Championship table next season.
Stubbs will be unveiled as the club’s new boss at a noon press conference at AESSEAL New York Stadium today, having signed a three-year deal along with the first-team coach he brings with him, John Doolan.
Rotherham chairman Tony Stewart says the 44-year-old’s high aspirations match those of the Millers and bode well for the future.
“We are ambitious and he is, and that cocktail might put us in good stead,” the owner said.
“His record speaks for itself and it is exciting to be looking forward to the future under Alan.
“He knows where we are at and what we want and are looking forward to him put his ‘fit’ on it and us moving upwards.”
Stubbs and Doolan had to resign from Hibernian yesterday to force through the deal when Rotherham’s talks with the Scottish outfit over compensation failed to end in agreement.
The pair won the Scottish FA Cup Final with the Edinburgh side only 11 days ago, having twice taken them close to promotion to the Scottish Premier League in their two years together at Easter Road.
Stewart added: “You dot the ‘i’s and cross the ‘t’s and we’ve done it, that’s the main thing.
“We are obviously pleased and think we have got a good catch. He wanted it and we wanted it, and it’s a lovely marriage.”
Stubbs’ arrival ends a two-week search after the departure of Neil Warnock, who led the Millers out of the drop zone to safety and 21st place last season - the same position in which the Millers finished under Steve Evans the year before.
“Alan and his number two have plenty of energy,” Stewart went on. “We are looking forward to a good future and developing in our third season in the Championship.”
Meanwhile, Mark Burchill, who had two loan spells with the Millers, is adamant his former Celtic teammate, Stubbs, is moving to a bigger club by joining Rotherham.
Burchill, now 35, has now retired from playing and was manager of another Scottish team, Livingston, until last December.
He said: “It’s a natural progression for him to go and I think any guy in Scotland, even at the lower end of the Premiership, would jump at this job. I have do doubt about that.
“There’s no comparison whatsoever. Fans in Scotland don’t realise, there are 50 clubs bigger than the clubs at the bottom half of the Premiership. That’s a simple fact.
“They’re bigger, they can pay bigger money, the money they get from Sky TV is a lot more, and as a manager and a coach a lot of it comes down to how much money you’ve got to spend.”
Scottish international Burchill made three appearances for the Millers in 2004 and then 28 in 2008/09.
He added “Rotherham are a well-supported club They’re a big club, and as soon as I saw they were interested I knew if Alan had any chance of going he would go. It’s as simple as that. It’s an absolute no-brainer for him to go.
“It’s the perfect time for him to get out, having won the Scottish Cup and gone down in history at Hibs.
“To go to England, to go to the Championship, is progress. I don’t care what English Championship club it was, he would have gone to any - and even the top half of League One.
“They’ve got a brilliant new stadium and they’ve got a really good fan-base, fans who are really passionate about the team and really support them.
“They’ve got a brilliant owner who has been there for a few years now and is building the club.
“I think it’s a great job for him, I really do - and whether Hibs fans, or fans in Scotland, like it or not, Rotherham is the next level.
“There will be no comparison in the wage bill. As a manager, you know you can get more money to spend on players, which will mean better players if you do your recruitment right, which undoubtedly he will.
“For me, every single thing pointed towards him going.”