The £22 million striker and all the other Stoke City new boys lying in wait for Rotherham United

Rotherham United manager Matt Taylor. Picture: Kerrie BeddowsRotherham United manager Matt Taylor. Picture: Kerrie Beddows
Rotherham United manager Matt Taylor. Picture: Kerrie Beddows
Millers manager Matt Taylor gives his thoughts on the first-day clash.

ROTHERHAM United could come up against a £22 million frontman on Saturday after a prolific summer of recruitment by Championship opening-day opponents Stoke City.  

The Potters' head count of new faces is in double figures and one of them is Brazilian striker Wesley Moares who has joined from Aston Villa.

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Premier League Villa paid that eight-figure amount to sign him from Brugge two years only to see his time in the Midlands hit by a cruciate knee ligament injury.

The 26-year-old is now looking to get his career back on track at the bet365 Stadium where the Millers survived a barrage of Stoke attacks to win 1-0 last season.

Manager Alex Neil said: “We've got him on a one-year contract and it allows us to have a really good look at him. He's having an opportunity playing a lower level than what he's been used to. You don’t get bought for £22m if you're not a good player."

Among Stoke's new boys are also winger Chiquinho, signed on loan from Wolverhampton Wanderers, and Morocco international centre-forward Ryan Mmaee who has joined from Hungarian champions Ferencvaros for a fee of around £3.5m.

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In addition, they have also landed Portuguese attacker Andre Vidigal on a permanent deal from Maritimo

Other pre-season signings include goalkeeper Mark Travers (Bournemouth, loan), right-back Ki-Jana Hoever (Wolves, loan) and left-back Enda Stevens (free agent after leaving Sheffield United).

They have also taken centre-halves Michael Rose (free agent after leaving Coventry City) and Luke McNally (Burnley loan) and midfielders Ben Pearson (Bournemouth, permanent) and  Daniel Johnson (free agent after leaving Preston North End).


ROTHERHAM United manager Matt Taylor surveyed Stoke City's summer of spending and then defiantly declared his team will head to the bet355 Stadium this weekend with no fear.  

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The boss accepts the severity of the opening-day test the Millers face against Championship opponents who have invested heavily in recruitment in their bid to become a top-flight side again.

“It's a stark reminder of our competition and the markets we're living in,” he said.

However, Rotherham won't be doffing their caps to Alex Neil's men as they seek to emulate their October 2022 win at the home of the Potters.

"We're expecting a hell of a game," Taylor said. "But they finished only three points ahead of us last season and we took four points off them. There is no fear from our point of view.”