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Lomas wants Millwall's youngsters to get loan experience

© Millwall FC
© Millwall FC

STEVE Lomas has revealed he is planning to send some of Millwall's youngsters out on loan this season.

Lomas believes experience in the lower leagues is essential in any player's development – so he will not hesitate in blooding his academy stars in League One, League Two or non-league.

One of the Lions' most promising prospects, midfielder Fred Onyedinma, is only 16 – but Lomas says even he could be ready for senior football, having signed a professional contract last month.

"Fred's a young boy so let's not get ahead of ourselves," Lomas said. "I am a firm believer that we need to get more of our academy boys out playing football in men's leagues.

"When I look at young kids who are 20 or 21 and they don't have a league game under their belt, I just don't think we're doing them any favours. They get to a certain level and they've got to stand on their own two feet.

"Maybe we're a bit guilty of over-protecting kids now; there comes a point where they have to sink or swim. Clubs are always crying about there not being enough good, young talent – but we're not getting them out enough. I'm talking about getting them out to a level where they can thrive.

"Fred is only 16 but I was playing in the Irish League when I was 15. I was out learning the game against senior men. It's a fine balance between making sure they can cope and getting out there and testing themselves against better players. That's where they will learn.

"You coach players and improve their skill sets but you have to let them use their ability in a competitive environment. It's a character test as well."

Staff

(@NewsAtDen)

10 thoughts on “Lomas wants Millwall's youngsters to get loan experience

  • July 11, 2013 at 11:51
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    Exactly ! Think sometimes we hold em back be nice to see some youngsters getting bench time and cameos to show players like Fred that if they keep their head down and attitude in check and work hard their reward will come

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    • July 11, 2013 at 12:02
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      very good news....its a tough business and they can toughen up and then come back more tough and professional

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  • July 11, 2013 at 11:54
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    Totally agree with SL, know body learns their trade sitting around. This is good to see, sure the kids and parents are encouraged by SL philosophy. The future looks bright the futures SL.

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  • July 11, 2013 at 12:28
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    About bloody time. Can't believe I was so against Lomas taking over. What a breath of fresh air. Get our youngsters out there and get them the experience they need. While you're at it, bugger of DNG and Woolford to somewhere very very far away!

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  • July 11, 2013 at 13:26
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    This is all good rhetoric coming out of the club and is making me feel good about the coming season. BUT when you look back over all that's been happening and what's being put into place with development etc, this is standard stuff for running a football club. I think we've been starved of this professional attitude for a good many years, which actually frustrates me a little bit. What the f&@k have we been playing at for the last 6-7 years? Lomas has been in around the top level of football and is bringing all that with him. I reckon he's been more than a manager thus far. He's come in and transformed the place!

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    • July 11, 2013 at 13:29
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      I just hope the football is up to scratch lol.

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      • July 11, 2013 at 13:50
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        @Swanny: Swanny I know how you feel because last year we were rock bottom and lets face it other results kept us in the division, it seems that Lomas has looked at the club in the first few weeks and his carrying out a root and branch culture change and it seems JB has backed him.
        But your right what you siad mate all this will mean nothing without results when the real stuff starts but judging what he is doing and the type of player he is going for his is a bit like Baldrick I think he has a cunning plan like Baldrick and look what happened to him he got a knighthood.
        But if he steadies the boat for this season and we start to get preformances that resemble Real Wall ,I am sure we will be quitely satisfied with him as the new man at the helm at the Den but as said before time will tell (not long to wait now).

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    • July 12, 2013 at 02:29
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      @Swanny: My thoughts exactly mate, it shows how much damage there has been at the club in regards to downgrading the training and youth facillities. Hopefully this is now something the club can learn from and realise that money can't be cut so dramatically without negative long term effects taking place.

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  • July 11, 2013 at 17:43
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    Every single statement SL has made so far regarding the running of a club echoes my thoughts and for me is 100% correct. I mentioned before that we have totally dried up bringing talented youth players through, I am talking about talented players who attracted attention from other clubs and commanding a fee (usually too cheap imo), the last batch were the Cahill, Reid, Kennedy, Thatcher, Ifill, Neill etc. At some point we had to bite the bullet and blood them naturally with an element of risk. This stopped! I suppose the business end of the game and the need for survival and TV revenue etc had a part to play and we had to play it safe. Palace tend to get the balance better for me!

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    • July 11, 2013 at 19:06
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      @JonnyBanks: agree totally. Hardly any youngsters were brought through in the past few years. Perhaps KJ knew he would gets his nuts chewed off if results never came with it?

      Lets hope SL has more cahonas and can withstand the crap he will get should results not come immediately. I for one will give him time.

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