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Evasive Evans adds fuel to Posh link fire

What better way to throw fuel on a fire than a refusal to say the one word that would make all speculation surrounding Steve Evans’ potential move to Peterborough go away?

Millers boss Evans has been installed as a 15/8 front runner to replace the sacked Darren Ferguson at Posh – a club he has intrinsic links with.

His position as a favourite for the job is an obvious one. 

Evans’ family home is close to Peterborough, he regularly goes to watch games there and he admits to have a good relationship with the powers that be.

And the rumour mill went in to overdrive after Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony hinted his first-choice manager may be in a job and is a winner.

The rumours could well amount to nothing, the lovechild of an internet forum, a well-timed tweet or even the smallest of bets.

But the fact that Evans’ has not ruled himself out of the running is interesting.

Despite getting several opportunities in his pre-match press conference on Monday to rule out a move to London Road and shut down a potentially damaging distraction, Evans continued to avoid the word ‘no’.

The lack of that one little - albeit mightily powerful - word leaves doubts hanging over what in fact was something of a denial.

Evans went as far as to say he knew nothing of any reported interest in him and that he has a great job at Rotherham with a chairman he gets on very well with.

He even told supporters they had no need to be concerned.

“I know nothing about it, my phone started going crazy last night, I know nothing about it I am focus on the job here, my only thoughts are on Watford on Tuesday night," he said ahead of Tuesday's Championship clash at Vicarage Road.

“I understand where the speculation comes from, I have a good relationship with the chairman there and a good relationship with Barry Fry.

“I have an excellent relationship with Darren Ferguson and he has lost his job so out of respect it wouldn’t be fitting for me to make any other comments other than I know nothing about it.

“All I can say is that I work for a great man, fact.

“He’s not just my chairman and boss, but he is probably one of my best friends.

“I am not so sure there will be approach like everyone seems to think but if there is I’m sure the chairman and I will deal with that appropriately.

“Our fans should have no need to be concerned. 

"I have got a job to do here, I am under contract here, I live in the town and I give it everything I have got.

“I’m just saying I have got a fantastic job at a fantastic club, I work for a great man represent the most passionate and wonderful supporters and there’s not many managers who wouldn’t want to be part of that.”

A ringing endorsement for the job he has at the Millers if there ever was one.

But wouldn’t it have sounded better with a resounding ‘No, I’m not interested or ‘I’m not leaving for anyone’?

Instead he refused to deal with “what ifs” and in doing so left a huge cloud of uncertainty over his future just before the club’s biggest few weeks of the season.

Perhaps this was just a genuine oversight and mistake.

But, could this be construed as a deliberate ploy by Evans, a clever tactic to keep both clubs sweet?

The emphatic praise of the Millers, Tony Stewart and the job he currently has in South Yorkshire will certainly read well for him if no official approach comes or if it does come and is rejected.

'I said all along I had a great job here', Evans will be able to say.

At the same time, the lack of ‘no’ is nothing like a come-and-get-me plea, but it certainly does leave the door open should Posh be contemplating a move for Evans.

Whatever happens, this is unlikely to be the last we hear of it and until a new manager is in the London Road dugout the speculation will be surrounding Evans and the club.

Yet it could all have been averted with the use of the simple word. No.

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