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Millwall boss excited by potential of diminutive El Bekri

© Millwall FC
© Millwall FC

FANS may get a glimpse of starlet Sofiane El Bekri sooner rather than later.

Millwall manager Ian Holloway says it would be "fantastic" to play the diminutive midfielder in a first-team game one day.

El Bekri, who was signed by the Lions on a free transfer after being let go by RC Lens, played in the U21s' 4-3 defeat at Nottingham Forest on Monday.

"I want to get the fans to buy into my style and I hope they will appreciate different types of players, not just ones who win tackles," Holloway said.

"It would be fantastic for me to use the little fella. He's knee-high to a grasshopper and four stone soaking wet. I'd love to get him on the pitch and see him pass and move the ball.

"We'd see a totally different style at Millwall with players like him. He might not win that tackle but I tell you what, he can’t half move the ball and make people look silly.

"Some of the things he's doing as an 18-year-old is quite frightening.

"Sofiane isn't the biggest but Angel Martinez wasn’t the strongest when I first signed him.

"If you’re a good footballer you will adapt to the pace and the strength of the Championship."

Alex Aldridge

(@accordingtoaldo)

35 thoughts on “Millwall boss excited by potential of diminutive El Bekri

  • September 12, 2014 at 10:42
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    So what Ollie is saying is that when El Bekri puts on a home shirt he looks like a pee taking smurf?

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  • September 12, 2014 at 10:43
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    So what Ollie is saying is that when El Bekri puts on a home shirt he looks like a p***s taking smurf?

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  • September 12, 2014 at 10:44
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    So what Ollie is saying is that El Bekri looks like a smurf in our home kit!!

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      • September 12, 2014 at 13:42
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        @foxy: LOL! Well done Foxy, always like to be cheered up during my 'DINNER - BREAK' . ( NOLU,WDC ).

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  • September 12, 2014 at 10:48
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    What I do not understand is,if he is such a young exciting talent/prospect - why would RC Lens let him go on a free transfer ?
    Does not make sense.

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    • September 12, 2014 at 11:09
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      @Longfield Lion: he sounds as if he's lazy..might have something to do with it

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      • September 12, 2014 at 11:21
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        @Jim28: They released him because they thought he was too small for the way they play

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        • September 12, 2014 at 12:37
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          @ChrisR: they said Messi was to small, whatever happened to him?

          He's still only 18 so has time to develop physically. Being short should only limit his heading ability. Small skillfull player, low centre of gravity plus we got him on a free so worth a punt.

          Personally I much prefer the creative type of player to the big lump who kicks the s*** out of the opposition.

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          • September 12, 2014 at 13:03
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            @MFC Lion: You're absolutely right. But you have to make room for both types of players

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          • September 12, 2014 at 13:54
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            @MFC Lion: Dennis wise a mini giant if I ever saw one, also Alex Rae and the little young fella that played midfield( mostly sub)late eighties.
            It's like a new season starting tomorrow and I can't wait to see the line-up.

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      • September 12, 2014 at 14:33
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        @Jim28: Be fair jim where did you get the lazy bit from,i read that as he is small and might not win many tackles,that dont mean he is lazy.

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    • September 12, 2014 at 12:43
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      @Longfield Lion:

      It happens all the time. Mathieu Valbuena was released by Bordeaux because he was judged too small.
      He hasn't done too bad since....hasn't he!

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  • September 12, 2014 at 10:53
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    Christophe Kinet was never the biggest but the crowd loved him. It's not just about tackling but attitiude and hard graft. If he shows that and is skillful, the crowd will love him.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 11:17
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    "He's four stone soaking wet".
    Classic Holloway. Love it.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 11:53
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    Can't we give him the same growth drugs Messi got at Barcelona :-). Still, being small didn't stop him did it. Good luck to the lad.

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    • September 12, 2014 at 12:16
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      @beedoscores: paul scholes made a living on not being able to tackle..tryed but couldn't quite master it.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 12:17
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    Just give the kid a spin, looks like a 10 yr old, thought maybe I'd overdone the smoke when I saw his photo. Incredible!!!!

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  • September 12, 2014 at 12:26
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    Just how small is he then? Can't find his height & weight anywhere on the net? 4 stobe when wets a grwat description but I'm intrigued to know?

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    • September 12, 2014 at 12:42
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      @matmillwall: googled and a still from football manager had him at 168cm (5'6") and 62 kg (9.8 stone)

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      • September 12, 2014 at 13:28
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        @MFC Lion: Is he any good in the air?

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        • September 12, 2014 at 13:42
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          @Peckham exile: tim cahill not a tall player ..didn't seem to hamper his heading ability..

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  • September 12, 2014 at 13:17
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    This kid will not only become one of the biggest assets we have but will also be our most dangerous player. Admire IH for changing the culture & I think he along with Martin will make an entertaining change!

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  • September 12, 2014 at 15:04
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    Got to have faith in Holloway he hasn't let us down so far.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 15:13
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    Denis wise I rest my case !!

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  • September 12, 2014 at 15:17
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    Anton Otulakowski was only 5"9 but could handle himself in an era when the game was much more physical.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 18:34
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    Warwick Davies.

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  • September 12, 2014 at 19:05
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    How tall is he & is he skinny with it cos unless he's exceptionally skilful he will get battered so we'll see.
    As we all know maradona was 5'3" but stocky with it but not until he was about 21 did he start to thicken out, then nobody no matter how big could get the ball off him. Romario arguably Brazil's greatest ever striker was 5' 4" but has the highest goal scoring record as a Brazilian striker.
    Aguero is 5'6" but his movement in the box enables him to lose his marker & become a threat with his head.
    Height doesn't make a great deal of difference over 5'9 or 10" but it really depends on where you play on the field .

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  • September 12, 2014 at 21:45
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    So, when it comes to mentioning diminutive former MFC players, I name Possee a little legend, and some 'new age' Millwall supporter = (PR*CK)' sees fit to dislike the comment ? Typical of the new t****** that have driven away the real Millwall Support. Roll on promotion, then we can all enjoy the prawn sandwiches!

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    • September 12, 2014 at 22:10
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      @frank: bit harsh Frank as long as they are not trouble makers and they are millwall they can have an opinion. Also they are maybe too young to know Possie.

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  • September 13, 2014 at 01:14
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    little midfielder from 80s? darren morgan

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    • September 13, 2014 at 08:14
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      @scottwall: no, he was about as much use as a spoiler on a skoda.

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