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Millwall winger: Holloway factor crucial in contract talks

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LEE Martin admits he would have walked away from Millwall at the end of last season had Steve Lomas remained as manager.

So the winger is glad that his favourite boss, Ian Holloway, replaced the Northern Irishman in January – and then offered him a new deal.

After returning from holiday in Dubai last month, Martin put pen-to-paper on a two-year contract extension at The Den.

That second year was crucial for the 27-year-old – hence talks to keep him in SE16 took longer than expected.

But Martin insists his Millwall future was "never in doubt".

And he has spoken for the first time of the extent of his unhappiness under Lomas, who he claims misled fans about his injury record.

"A lot of what was put out there wasn't true," Martin told the Southwark News.

"I was fit to play. The gaffer at the time was very clever in how he put things out there. I had a couple of niggles but they were only niggles and I'd be fit again in a few days.

"It was tight hamstrings and things like that. I was unfortunate with a couple but the majority of the time I was fit, ready to play but I wasn't being picked for whatever reason.

"Under Lomas I was unhappy and I would have left had he still been in charge."

In the wake of Holloway's appointment, Martin was ordered to improve his fitness.

And it wasn't until the final run-in that he reached his peak.

"When the new manager came in, he was expecting to see a different player," Martin said.

"Eventually I got there with my fitness but it took a lot longer than he thought it would.

"I was playing well towards the end of the season because I was fit. I hadn't been fit.

"People hear that and wonder what you've been doing in training, but match fitness comes by playing games and I hadn't been playing.

"By December, I'd played a full 90 minutes on just two occasions – and both of those were behind-closed-doors.

"Going into the New Year I'd started only once and I wasn't fit enough.

"Last year was a bit of a blur – I didn't play and then I did play. It was only in the last eight games that I felt fit.

"Before then I was worried if I'd last 70 mintues and that's no way to approach a game. I was thinking about getting through a match rather than relaxing and enjoying it."

Martin believes that Holloway is the perfect boss for him.

"I trust him because I know what he can get out of me," he said. "It's a win-win situation.

"I was never going anywhere else to be honest. I got off the phone after speaking with him and I said to my mum and my girlfriend how brilliant the gaffer is.

"We had a little chat and I was so fired up after it that I wanted to play football then and there. It was a very motivitational speech.

"As soon as Ollie agreed to give me a second year, I was always going to sign.

"The manager knows what's good for me."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

35 thoughts on “Millwall winger: Holloway factor crucial in contract talks

  • July 7, 2014 at 10:32
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    I think Martin will be a big player for us under Holloway's leadership.
    Lomas who?

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  • July 7, 2014 at 10:39
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    Lomas,Lomas your a c***!!!
    Good luck Lee, continue the new season with the form of the latter part of last season!

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      • July 7, 2014 at 20:58
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        @SE14: really? Bore off mate you geek!!
        Get yourself down the pub and get some friends!!!!

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  • July 7, 2014 at 10:49
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    The news I would like to hear this week is of a couple of new signings, time is passing quickly.

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    • July 7, 2014 at 11:12
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      @Peckhamlad: Less than 5 weeks to go to the start of the new season and we desperately need at least one more striker to bring the best out of Gregory because Easter, Marquis or McDonald won't. Another winger in case Martin or Woolford get injured .The other position lacking cover is left back although Beevers or Williams can play there if Malone only misses the odd game.

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      • July 7, 2014 at 16:06
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        @denslions: massive fight in portugal between easter and mcdonald so the search for strikers may be even more urgent now

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        • July 7, 2014 at 16:15
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          @thecolumbusblock: I can see the bonding part of the portugal trip is working then.
          Who won the fight and where did you get your information?.

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          • July 7, 2014 at 16:22
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            @jim1222: not sure who won jim, prob said too much akready mate

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    • July 7, 2014 at 12:03
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      @Peckhamlad: let's hope talk of Ishmael miller is just talk , he is totally hopeless and a waste of space .

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      • July 7, 2014 at 14:24
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        @southstandview: IH may make him a different player, or fit in with his scheme, presuming of course the rumours are true. He may have another target.

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        • July 7, 2014 at 14:44
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          @Peckhamlad: he's 27 now and apparently according to forest and Yeovil has a bit of attitude problem

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          • July 7, 2014 at 17:21
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            @southstandview: Miller played for us a few years ago didn't he? I thought we got him on loan from Borough, or is my memory playing tricks?

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  • July 7, 2014 at 10:52
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    "LEE Martin admits he would have walked away from Millwall at the end of last season had Steve Lomas remained as manager"

    Many supporters would have done as well Lee. Should never have been considered for the job BUT on the flip side, now glad he was appointed because I doubt we would have got Ollie any other way.

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    • July 7, 2014 at 11:15
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      @Basingstokelion: Thats actually a good point, had we got a run of the mill manager, who had us safe, but nothing more than he would probably have kept his job and Holloway would have gone elsewhere so hopefully its all worked out for the best in the end.

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    • July 7, 2014 at 11:16
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      @Basingstokelion:

      Basingstoke - change 'many' to 'most' if not 'all' supporters and I'll 'like' your comment.

      Lomas is doing nothing at present - shame he didn't get the Leeds job ...

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  • July 7, 2014 at 11:01
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    It's not just the manager u should want to play for it's the fans that support you every week home & away.

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    • July 7, 2014 at 11:17
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      @block 28: Whilst of course that is true, its worth remembering that this is his career and full time job, Players only have to play in front of us for 90 minutes a week where they have to work with the manager day in day out.

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    • July 7, 2014 at 12:01
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      @block 28: agree 100%..if you dont care for the badge or the fans..i've got 2 words for you martin the 2nd one is off

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    • July 7, 2014 at 16:24
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      @block 28: Block this is what i was saying at the start of last season when a good few of our team was not putting in a shift,our centre backs were not contesting balls in the box and lomas took all the blame,though i do admit he deserved most of it.
      I hope, sorry i know this coming is going to be opposite to last season even if results do not go for us it wont be for lack of effort.

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  • July 7, 2014 at 11:24
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    Lee i think we All be fine now that Cock lomas as gone we All be better off this time

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  • July 7, 2014 at 12:31
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    Lomas your a c***
    Lomas, Lomas
    Your a c***!!!

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  • July 7, 2014 at 13:04
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    Just off subject.
    Steven Reid has joined Burnley.
    Being in the Prem gets you players.

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  • July 7, 2014 at 13:25
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    Vermin lied alot..but some you have said.dont add up..when olly came the lot of yer were unfit..or was he misleding us as well..you had 3 good games at the end of the season it would be great to see you carry that form against weeds

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    • July 7, 2014 at 14:17
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      @Jim28: Weeds ! Does your mum know you're posting.

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      • July 7, 2014 at 16:43
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        @Lincolnshire Lion.: for someone who has a snide remark about someone's dead mother .makes you a right c**t

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        • July 7, 2014 at 17:41
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          @Jim28: that's pathetic and below the belt. You realy need to grow up. It's Leeds. Sorry to hear about your mother.

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  • July 7, 2014 at 15:50
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    Who is this Lomas person that people do speak about?.....

    About time someone had the balls to blame the idiot from within.
    It's good to see another player happy, no good going to work p***** off.

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  • July 7, 2014 at 19:40
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    Sky Sports understands Monaco forward Gaetano Monachello is a target for a number of clubs in England.

    Monaco are thought to be willing to let the powerful striker go out on loan next season and will cover his full salary, which has alerted a number of Championship sides.

    Monachello came through the ranks at Inter Milan and was a prolific goalscorer in their youth teams, but left in 2012 when he joined Ukrainian side Metalurh Donetsk.

    The 20-year-old made the move to Monaco last summer, but was sent out on loan to Belgian side Cercle Brugge and Greek outfit Ergotelis.

    Monaco are ready to farm him out on loan again as they want him to gain valuable first-team experience and the likes of Millwall, Sheffield Wednesday, Bournemouth, Brenford and Blackpool are all thought to be keeping tabs on the Italian.

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  • July 7, 2014 at 19:40
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    now that would be an interesting signing - if anyone could pull this off - its Olly!!!

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  • July 7, 2014 at 20:26
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    Lee has still got to prove he can be a consistent player for us.
    Admittedly he improved under IH but we need to see consistency from him if we are to push up the table a bit.
    We will get a striker before the start of the season though time is going by now.
    Would like to look at Macd again.
    Still think he's a player.

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  • July 8, 2014 at 00:12
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    Getting a striker by the end of next week will probably be good for olly...but we know how long it took to get a halifax & yeovil player.not to mention the length of time it took for fordey & martin to sign a contract..if we miss out on buying a striker expect a loanee ..& i know how everyone loves them

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